He has replaced Mike Fletcher who has stepped down to focus on his new business venture Arete Capital Partners and to devote more time to his chairman position at AIM-listed Energy plc.
In the six years that Fletcher was chairman Aberla’s turnover has grown from a start-up to £15m, with the business now employing 47 staff.
The group incorporates several specialist businesses including: Aberla Energy, Aberla Utilities and Aberla M&E, operating across the UK out of head offices in Warrington.
Whawell brings over 16 years’ service in the energy industry and previous roles include 10 years as chief financial officer of Stobart Group and 4 years as chief executive officer of Stobart’s Energy division.
During his time with Stobart, he was part of the team which led the improvement in the Group’s share price from £1.30 to £3.00, raised £250m in equity and increased the energy divisions’ profits from £9.1m to £24.2m.
Whawell said: “Aberla has enjoyed superb levels of growth in recent times, and they have the ingredients and the processes in place to be an industry leader. I look forward to being part of their journey.”
Paul McCarren, CEO at Aberla said, “We have ambitious plans and are looking to continuously evolve the business. Having someone of Ben’s calibre and expertise will have immediate benefits.