Dutch-speaking Phil Verster has been appointed as managing director of the new Abellio ScotRail – Network Rail Alliance.
The quick release of Phil Verster by Network Rail to work alongside Steve Montgomery and the Day One ScotRail team marks the clear determination of both companies to set in place a formal alliance structure as soon as possible.
Phil will work closely with Abellio’s transition team and the existing ScotRail leadership to organise the alliance transition arrangements, as well as facilitating an orderly hand over from Steve Montgomery, who has agreed to lead the new ScotRail franchise during the initial period of operations. Steve’s leadership will ensure continuity in service quality for customers.
Says Phil Hufton, managing director of network operations for Network Rail, ‘Phil brings a wealth of valuable experience to what will be one of the highest profile roles in the industry. He has achieved great results during his time on the East Coast Main Line, and I look forward to him bringing that same positive approach to leading the railway in Scotland.’
Phil Verster has been route managing director London North Eastern since November 2011. He joined Network Rail after a five-year stint with Iarnród Éireann which he joined as chief mechanical engineer and rose to deputy CEO. Previously he was engineering operations director with South Eastern Trains, joining in January 2003. Verster has also worked for Bombardier Transportation.
He was educated at Stellenbosch University in South Africa where he read a masters degree in electrical engineering. He has an MBA from Newcastle University.