Wood Group hires Rolls-Royce’s Balan as CFO

Arvind Balan

John Wood Group, the Aberdeen-based engineering and consulting giant, announced the appointment of Arvind Balan to the company’s board as chief financial officer (CFO) and executive director, effective from April 15, 2024.

Balan, who will be based in London, will succeed David Kemp, whose intention to retire was announced on August 22, 2023.

Kemp will remain with Wood to ensure a smooth transition and a further announcement will be made when the date of his retirement is known.

Balan has been CFO of the Civil Aerospace business of Rolls-Royce, the FTSE 100 aerospace and defence company, for the last two years.

The Civil Aerospace business has annual revenue of around £6 billion and employs around 18,000 people.

Prior to this, Balan held a number of executive financial leadership roles at Shell, where he worked for 14 years across the UK, Singapore and China.

He is a chartered accountant and holds an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management. He will 

Balan’s election as a director will be subject to approval by the company’s shareholders at the AGM in May 2024.

Wood chairman Roy Franklin said: “We are delighted Arvind is joining us at an exciting time for Wood.

“His deep industry experience in energy and engineering businesses, coupled with his strategic financial leadership to deliver purposeful and profitable growth is a great fit.

“I know Arvind will be a strong addition to Wood’s board of directors and the executive leadership team at a time of continued transformation for Wood.

“I also thank David for his years of service to Wood and wish him every success for the future.”

Wood CEO Ken Gilmartin said: “Arvind is an experienced and dynamic financial leader with strong capital markets and operational experience in industries and geographies in which Wood excels.

“He is passionate about growth and transformation, and I look forward to working with Arvind on realising our significant potential. I echo Roy’s thanks to David for his leadership and commitment to Wood.”  

Balan said: “Wood has always stood out for me as a company with unique potential.

“With over 35,000 highly skilled employees, long standing client relationships and world class technical capabilities, the company is well placed in its growth journey as a leader in the energy and material markets.

“I’m delighted to join as CFO to help drive growth in a very exciting time in the company’s transformation. It is a privilege to join Wood’s board and executive team to deliver collective success for our employees, clients and shareholders.”