A Siemens executive who played a leading role in securing Hull’s offshore wind turbine blade factory has been appointed as CEO of trade body RenewableUK.
Dan McGrail succeeds a man he was in negotiations with to land the £310 million investment on the Humber Bank; former civil servant Hugh McNeal.
Currently chief executive of Siemens Engines, he will take up his post in May, joining former Grimsby MP Melanie Onn, installed last year as deputy.
He said “I’m very excited to be taking up this new role representing over 400 of the most dynamic companies working in the entire energy sector.
“RenewableUK’s members are driving the energy transition faster than anyone could have predicted, from our world-leading offshore wind industry to onshore wind and innovative marine power, energy storage and renewable hydrogen. We’ll need all these technologies to get to net zero at the lowest cost for consumers, and I can’t wait to start working with RenewableUK members as they invest in projects across the country, create thousands of new jobs and grow the UK supply chain in the years ahead.”
As reported, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has raised the bar for installation of offshore wind in the pursuit to make the UK the ‘Saudi Arabia’ of green energy.
Predecessor Mr McNeal said: “We’ve come a long way in the last few years and wind energy is at the heart of our future energy system.
“RenewableUK is delivering for our members and I’m confident that it will go from strength to strength with Dan in charge. He will be an outstanding CEO; he’s a creative entrepreneur with an exceptionally strong track record on bringing the industrial benefits of wind energy to the UK at scale. Having worked closely with him on the Hull project, I know how much he cares about continuing to expand the supply chain as a priority for the industry.”
Mr McGrail joined Siemens UK in 2004 and has worked in a variety of roles across the energy industry. Between 2010 and 2014 he led Siemens’ plans to develop and invest in offshore wind turbine manufacturing in the UK, negotiating with the UK government and overseeing one of the company’s most significant factory investments in its recent history.
The final investment decision of £160 million was announced in 2014, alongside a £150 million investment by Associated British Ports to revitalise Hull’s Alexandra Dock.
As managing director of Siemens Power Generation from 2014, he expanded UK activities in the thermal power market. He became chief executive of Siemens Engines in late 2017, leading the rebranding of the company and helping to secure significant growth.
RenewableUK’s chair, Stephen Bull, said: “Dan is joining us at a crucial time for the sector, as the Prime Minister has put the growth of renewables at the heart of his plans for a green industrial revolution . . . .
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