Artisan Real Estate unveils UK-wide operational restructure

Clive Wilding outside Custom House, Glasgow © Julie Broadfoot

Artisan Real Estate is restructuring its UK-wide operations following the announcement that UK Property Director, Clive Wilding, is stepping away from the business during the next few months into long-awaited retirement. Mr Wilding, who for the last 13 years has been the driving force behind Artisan’s evolution into one of the UK’s most progressive and respected commercial and residential developers, is retiring after 46 years in the property industry. He will continue to support Artisan in an advisory capacity for the remainder of the year.

Wilding’s departure from his previously hands-on operational role heralds an ambitious expansion of the company’s UK-wide business network, in accordance with the company’s succession plan – especially in key strongholds of the north of England and Scotland. Artisan has launched a new North of England office based in Leeds and continues to strengthen its Edinburgh-based leadership team in Scotland – as well developing its Bristol-based South West division.

Jaco Jansen, Artisan’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Artisan has enjoyed spectacular UK regional growth since the company was established in 2009 as an independent, entrepreneurial, values-led property developer and investor. Since day one, Clive has been instrumental in driving forward this success, identifying and delivering pioneering complex mixed-use developments which have transformed cities across the UK – and made a fundamental difference to how people live their lives.

“We are now building on this remarkable legacy and significantly expanding our regional presence across Scotland and the north of England in particular, strengthening and investing more in experienced, locally-based teams. This is a direct response to the very positive market opportunities that these important areas now provide – especially with large-scale sustainable residential and mixed-use development in sensitive city centre environments.”

Artisan’s North of England operation, based in Leeds, is headed up by James Bulmer who has been promoted to Regional Development Director (North) and is supported by a newly recruited seven-strong in-house team combining a full development function with a direct build capability – including project management, commercial, technical and sales expertise. Artisan North’s initial focus will be predominately large-scale residential brownfield development in Leeds and across the wider Yorkshire region. This encompasses the £65 million Kirkstall Place scheme for 263-new homes currently under construction, and a burgeoning new project pipeline which includes the acquisition of an 11-acre site adjacent to the Salts Mill World Heritage Site in Saltaire.

Artisan is also continuing to strengthen its market position in Scotland with David Westwater promoted to Regional Development Director (Scotland). His appointment is further boosted by several key additions to the regional management team as Artisan continues ambitious investment plans focusing on low carbon city centre residential and mixed-use development. This includes the appointment of urban regeneration specialist, Alastair Bain, who joined Artisan in 2021 as the Scottish Regional Commercial Manager, supported by Sean Ferguson as Assistant Commercial Manager. The team has been further strengthened by the promotion of Christie Turner to Regional Sales Manager.

Clive Wilding will continue to provide strategic support to the company’s regional development teams during the next 12 months in a non-executive capacity. His tenure at Artisan incorporates some of the most significant and award-winning city centre developments delivered anywhere in the UK over the last decade. This included Edinburgh’s New Waverley, a £250 million transformation of the heart of the city’s historic Old Town into a thriving mixed-use community, the regeneration of Glasgow’s famous Custom House building into a riverside hotel complex and the conversion of the Everards Print Works in Bristol to a vibrant hotel, residential and commercial quarter.

Wilding also helped drive Artisan’s sustainable low carbon residential development agenda, incorporating strong guiding principles which set new best-practice benchmarks for sustainable housing developments in the UK – now being delivered in Kirkstall Place in Leeds and Canonmills Garden and Rowanbank Gardens in the centre of Edinburgh.

Speaking of his time at Artisan, Mr Wilding added: “I have been immensely fortunate to have been involved in some truly memorable and development projects during my time at Artisan. I am especially pleased to have shone the development spotlight firmly on high-quality city centre regional development. It is fitting that our regional offices now have the right platform to build on that legacy and continue to deliver transformational development to the benefit of our people, our cities and our wider environment.”