Mark McLaughlin has taken over from David Kirkby as managing director of Cromwell Property Group’s European business.

The move comes more than two years after Australia’s Cromwell acquired the business, formerly known as Valad Europe.

Kirkby, who was CEO of Valad Europe and has continued to lead Cromwell’s European business since the takeover, has become an executive director, Cromwell said.

“I am looking forward to being able to focus on strengthening our relationships with existing and new clients to support the growth of our business across Europe,” Kirkby said.

Cromwell said McLaughlin had “transitioned” into the top job in the past few months.

The move comes during a period in which Cromwell sought to list its European real estate platform in Singapore, before pulling the initial public offering.

McLaughlin was previously the group’s head of property Europe and head of the Benelux region. He joined the company in 2001.

Paul Weightman, CEO of Cromwell, said: “These appointments highlight our overall commitment to growing the European business into a market-leading investment management platform.

“The depth and diversity of Europe’s real estate market makes it a compelling opportunity for overseas capital seeking real estate returns.”