Millican, previously the finance and regulation director of Scottish Water, has been interim chief executive since the sudden death of Richard Ackroyd in October 2012.

Scottish Water chair Ronnie Mercer said: “Douglas is the outstanding candidate for the job of chief executive. He has been integral to the success of Scottish Water in its first 10 years and supported our former chief executive through Scottish Water’s most successful period of development. 

“He is the obvious choice to lead Scottish Water to even more success and sustain the high performance of the business.

The move has also been approved by ministers. Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Scottish Water has been set demanding targets to provide one of the best value for money water and sewerage packages in the UK by 2015.

“I am sure that Douglas, in his new position, will rise to the challenge and provide sound leadership and stability to allow Scottish Water to continue its successful progress to become one of the top utilities in the UK.”

Millican, who has previously worked with East of Scotland Water, Price Waterhouse in Edinburgh and New Zealand and with Tyco International in Australia, said he was “honoured” and “delighted” to be appointed chief executive.

Conor McGlone

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie