Andrew Hodgson is stepping down as CEO of Tyneside-based subsea engineering firm Soil Machine Dynamics (SMD).
He will be will be succeeded by his deputy Mike Jones from 23 October. Jones has worked for SMD for over 25 years.
A director since 2004, Jones takes over following a planned two and a half year transition put in place when SMD was acquired by the Chinese company CRRC Times Electric, a provider of electric railway propulsion and power control systems, in 2015.
Andrew Hodgson has been at the helm of the company for nine years and led the business through its acquisition by the Chinese company, public listed in Hong Kong, in a £120 million deal as part of the firm’s strategy to penetrate new markets in which SMD has particular expertise.
Hodgson said: “I’m proud to have been a part of SMD for the last nine years and see everything it has achieved despite the challenges facing the offshore industry in that time. We are coming to the end of a three-year turnaround on target with strong growth and revenue across all our business divisions.
“We’ve invested in our services, added products, expanded our global network and lowered operating costs."
In 2010 Jones led SMD’s Trenching, Mining and Renewable division, helping to secure its dominant position in subsea equipment for the growing Offshore Wind market, winning a Queens Award for the company 2012 and delivering a world-first in the deep water mining system for Nautilus Minerals.
For the past two years, Jones has been Deputy CEO working as a Board Member and MD in China developing a team and SMD facility in Shanghai to establish local operations for the China market.