SOUTHEAST ASIA BUILDING27 Jun 2024
New Leadership For Cundall APAC
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Hong Kong and Sydney – Global multi-disciplinary sustainability and engineering consultancy, Cundall, has announced new leadership for the Asia-Pacific region and for the Australian business. The new appointments reflect the rapid evolution of the region’s real estate markets, as asset performance, electrification, net zero transitions and increasing digitisation become core for asset owners and investors.

Partner Alex Saez is stepping up to the role of Asia-Pacific Managing Director, bringing his extensive understanding of the cultural and economic diversity across the region, to shape the ongoing expansion of Cundall’s presence in the region.

“As nations including the Philippines, Malaysia, India, Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam scale up developments in sectors including energy infrastructure, transport, aviation, data centres, education and healthcare, the need for net zero, environmentally sustainable and human-centric design and asset operations advisory services is acute,” Saez said.

“Cundall, with our combination of advanced engineering design and asset performance optimisation expertise, combined with our cultural diversity, is well-positioned to collaborate with both the private sector and government agencies to create a prosperous and climate-resilient future.”

Another sign of the company’s continued growth in the region is the elevation of award-winning Hong Kong-based structural engineer, Dong Chen, to Partner. Chen has led the evolution of Cundall’s Asia structures team into a digital-first, multidisciplinary design service with specialties in structural design optimisation to reduce embodied carbon, parametric modelling to resolve site and buildability challenges, and design for resilience to future climate changes.

In the Australian business, Director David Collins is taking up the role of Managing Director. He has an extensive track record in energy efficiency, environmentally sustainable design and implementing green ratings schemes. Collins has also over 15 years of history with the company, working with Cundall’s clients in both Australia and Asia across sectors including commercial office property, residential, health, aged care, industrial, retail, education and masterplanning.

“For over 20 years, Cundall Australia has been at the forefront of sustainable design, green construction advisory and asset optimisation strategy, with breakthrough projects that have shifted the goalposts, including multiple firsts for Green Star, NABERS, Living Building Challenge, WELL and FitWel rating schemes,” Collins said.

“We know that net zero means every building, everywhere, as soon as possible, and I look forward to working with our team, our clients, and our peers to accelerate progress and momentum.”

Cundall globally has a tenure policy for leadership, that facilitates smooth transitions in the business over a four-year cycle. Outgoing APAC Managing Director, Julian Bott, will now turn his expert attention to growing Cundall’s project pipeline for Building Performance Services globally and within Australia.

The BPS service is seeing exponential growth as asset owners and investors recognise the need to undertake strategic retrofits for electrification, energy efficiency and enhanced occupant wellbeing to protect asset value and relevance in the emerging decarbonised global finance and property market. This creates an alignment between ESG (environment, social and governance), another growth area for Cundall in APAC, with both engineering and sustainability expertise leveraged to develop practical, financially viable zero carbon roadmaps for assets, portfolios and organisations.

Outgoing Australian Managing Director, Garrit Schot, is also shifting into a new leadership role, coordinating and expanding the practice’s Australian building services engineering team as it grows to meet demand from sectors including new data centre developments and electrification of existing properties at both individual asset and portfolio scale.  

In the past two years, Cundall has expended its presence in Asia-Pacific with new offices in Bengalaru, India and Manila, the Philippines. This brings the number of locations where teams are based to 10, and further expansion is being carefully considered as demand for the company’s services increases in nations including Malaysia, Vietnam, South Korea, Thailand, Taiwan, and Indonesia.

“Asia is experiencing enormous growth, particularly from global investment due to the region’s relative geopolitical stability, enormous talent base in engineering and applied sciences, and strong government policies that are driving sustainable, low carbon approaches to infrastructure and property developments,” said Alex Saez.

“With our diverse team of over 200 people, and fluency across major regional languages, business protocols and physical requirements for resilient, robust and net zero solutions, Cundall is exceptionally well-placed to support this growth.”