A message from IPHA Chairman, Seamus McKeague


Last week, IPHA held its first board meeting of 2023 in the Sheraton Hotel beside Brussels Airport, and we had a full attendance.

The board unanimously approved the appointment of Kjell-Ole Gjestemoen (Keijo) as our next Executive Director. Keijo lives near Oslo and has recently retired from a long senior career with Peikko.

He will take on the position of Executive Director effective from 1st April, with a 2 month handover from Carsten, who has served in this role for 10 years. I welcome Keijo to the IPHA family as a friend, colleague and now Executive Director, and wish him happiness and success in his new career with IPHA.

Keijo will partner and support myself, the IPHA Board, members, and associate members, to bring leadership, strategy, knowledge and value in our mission to grow the market for precast construction and the use of prestressed hollowcore floors.

We are an international association operating in a period of great change, with many agendas to navigate, including climate change, sustainability, energy crisis, wars and the requirement for more homes with supporting infrastructure to accommodate an ever increasing global population.

We are witnessing terrible disasters in Turkey and Syria where many thousands of people have died and many more are left homeless when their homes collapsed, as they were not constructed to withstand seismic shocks from earthquakes disasters.

I believe that IPHA has an important role in our industry to educate, share best practice and cooperate with other associations to earn the renewed confidence of governments, customers, clients and win new jobs for precast buildings and hollowcore floors.

The IPHA board are very appreciative to Carsten for his professionalism, commitment, integrity and friendship to all members, associates and all other stakeholders during his career with the association.

The board unanimously invited Carsten to become an Honorary member of IPHA, and so we are pleased that Carsten and Sues will continue to be our guests at annual conferences.

I look forward to meeting many of you at our 27th Annual Conference in Vilnius, the beautiful capital of Lithuania, on 11th – 14th May. Betonika, a company in the Consolis group, will host the event.

The theme of the conference is Hollowcore and Sustainability. The IPHA conference is the highlight event in our year and a great opportunity to meet and network with new friends in a beautiful city while staying in a great hotel. Please come to Vilnius and join a wonderful group of people for our annual conference.

Seamus McKeague, Chairman of IPHA