Change Brings Opportunity

AE Smith Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Andrew Permezel today announced to staff three important changes to the AE Smith Executive leadership team

22 Jul 2014


There are few companies I hoped would tap me on the shoulder… I was delighted to receive Andrew’s call early this year exploring the potential of what we might achieve leading AE Smith together –

David Willett

New Executive Chairman

On the 6 August 2014, Andrew Permezel (pictured above) will take on a new leadership role as Executive Chairman of AE Smith after 13 years as CEO. He said of his decision, “Simply put, it’s time for a change. This is an opportunity to introduce new experience and fresh thinking into the business.”

Andrew Permezel is the fourth generation to have headed the family business founded by his great grandfather Albert Edward Smith Senior 116 years ago in 1898.

He will still take an active role alongside a new CEO who will oversee the management of the business and ensure the AE Smith values and culture are maintained.

“We believe in helping people in everything we do,” said Andrew. “These are more than just words to me. They embody the culture of AE Smith and its people which I have had the privilege to lead, nurture and be a part of for the last 13 years.”

New Chief Executive Officer

Replacing Andrew as CEO will be David Willett (pictured below).

An industry professional with more than 13 years’ experience in executive leadership roles including Chief Operating Officer (COO), General Manager and CEO, David was most recently Managing Director of Actrol from 2011 to 2014.

“AE Smith has an enviable reputation in our industry that spans decades,” said David. “You can’t fake a track record of integrity, a helping spirit or a genuine care for your people and customers.”

“There are few companies I hoped would tap me on the shoulder,” David said. “I was delighted to receive Andrew’s call early this year exploring the potential of what we might achieve leading AE Smith together.”

David is no stranger to AE Smith, being involved with the Actrol national purchasing agreement which is helping AE Smith to leverage its considerable buying power. He also, serendipitously, gave a speech at the 2013 AE Smith Recognition Awards.

“I was able to experience AE Smith’s culture and character first hand, as it was being celebrated. It is a team galvanised by a set of values that helps breed success. It is a team I want to lead.”

New Opportunities

Andrew also announced today the resignation of Aldo Cevaal, Group General Manager Service.

Aldo has been with AE Smith for almost 17 years. During this time, Aldo championed, devised and implemented significant change at AE Smith Service that empowered teams around the country to deliver new levels of service and technology to help AE Smith customers.

Culturally, Aldo Cevaal helped Andrew Permezel champion the creation of the AE Smith belief statement. Capturing in writing for the first time what many at AE Smith already knew, “When we look at our most successful projects; when we look at our most successful customers; when we look at our most successful people, the common thread we find is a genuine desire to help one another, and to help each other help our customers,” said Aldo on many occasions.

“Thank you Aldo for your many years of service to AE Smith. During that period you have worked for the benefit of the company, its people and our customers. On behalf of everyone at AE Smith, good luck and we wish you well as you leave us to pursue your many other interests,” said Andrew.