Cushman & Wakefield has appointed Bryan Laxton as its first CEO in the UK.

The global real estate advisor has created the role following its growth in the UK and as a response to the tough economic times to create ‘focus and leadership’ for its 730-strong UK business.

Laxton’s role will officially come into effect in January next year and staff were told this week.

Laxton, who joined the firm in 1981, will report to Paul Bacon, CEO of Cushman & Wakefield’s Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) division.

Laxton is currently CEO of the 120-strong capital markets team and managing director of Cushman & Wakefield Finance, as well as a member of the UK management board and an EMEA board member.

His successor as head of the capital markets team is head of investment agency David Erwin,.

Laxton will work closely with the UK management committee and department heads to oversee the day to day running of the business as well as its continuing expansion.

‘During these unfavourable economic and market conditions our priority is to stay close to our clients and to take advantage of opportunities,’ said Laxton.