Ian Wood &amp Family: 10 Things You Didn’t Know


Despite their prominence, the public knows relatively little about Ian Wood and his family. They represent a global business empire with roots in Scotland spanning many decades. Unfolding the pages of their family chronicle, we will explore the lesser-known pieces of trivia and interesting details about the Woods. So, brace yourself for the symphony of wealth, entrepreneurial genius, civic contributions, and family unity embedded in the saga of Ian Wood and his loved ones.

1. The Wood Group’s Origin

Though globally associated with oil and gas, The John Wood Group initially had no ties with the industry. It was a ship repair and marine engineering company, founded by Ian Wood’s grandfather in 1912. Today, under the leadership of Ian Wood and his family, the business has expanded into an international multi-sector giant, dedicated to various industrial services.

Ian Wood’s father, Sir Ian Wood, successfully transitioned the business from marine engineering to oil & gas during the North Sea oil boom in the 1960s. Ian grew up surrounded by the industry and was groomed to become the new generation’s leader, carrying his family’s legacy forward.

2. Influence on Aberdeen

The Wood family has left a lasting imprint on Scotland, particularly in Aberdeen. The evidence of their family’s contribution is abundant in the city, through their business ventures, philanthropic initiatives, and civic contributions. Their influence can be seen in The Robert Gordon University, The Wood Foundation, Aberdeen Sports Village, and the Union Terrace Gardens redevelopment project.

Ian Wood, the family’s third generation, continues with the tradition of involving himself in local community development. His efforts and influence stretch well beyond corporate affairs, contributing to the social, educational, and economic growth of Aberdeen.

3. Ian Wood’s Separation from Business Life

It’s common knowledge that Ian Wood stepped down as chairman of Wood Group in 2012. However, few are aware that he withdrew himself from all executive responsibilities. This decision was marked by his passion for philanthropy and social causes.

Since his retreat from the business domain, Ian Wood has devoted his time and resources to philanthropic efforts, primarily through The Wood Foundation, where he actively participates in molding future leaders and contributing to the development of Scottish youth.

4. The Wood Foundation

The Wood Foundation was a significant diversification for the Wood family. Established by Sir Ian Wood in 2007, it became an exceptional medium for the family to contribute to the society. The foundation invests in the economic and social transformation of people and places, both in Scotland and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Ian Wood holds a significant role in the foundation. His leadership and strategic thinking have contributed to the foundation’s success in creating a transformative impact.

5. Wood Family & Art Patronage

The Wood family has an undying passion for the arts. Their love for art has not only led to the gathering of an impressive private collection, but they’ve also become significant patrons of the arts in Scotland. Ian Wood shares this passion and is a regular figure at art events, galleries, and auctions.

Furthermore, their charitable contributions extend to arts organizations, providing the necessary support to many regional artists and art projects. The family’s patronage has tremendously impacted the arts scene in Scotland.

6. BrewDog Investment

The Wood family, led by Ian Wood, has invested extensively in various sectors including in the controversial Scottish brewing company, Brewdog. This investment was considered risky, but it showcased their belief in local entrepreneurship and their willingness to support regional businesses.

Ian Wood’s involvement not only illustrates the family’s continued support for local enterprises but also reaffirms their broader commitment to the economic development of Scotland.

7. Environmental Initiatives

Despite their deep ties to the oil and gas industry, the Wood family has always been aware of their environmental responsibility. They’ve consistently committed to environmental initiatives, including reducing carbon emissions, supporting clean energy, and promoting sustainable practices.

Ian Wood, in particular, is known for his fervor for environmental conservation. He has been pushing for the mainstreaming of renewable energy, even as the family business remains deeply entrenched in the oil and gas industry.

8. Football Passion

Ian Wood shares a deep bond with football, just like his father Sir Ian Wood. This passion extends beyond following the sports. In fact, the Wood family has been lifelong supporters and generous contributors to the Aberdeen Football Club.

Under Ian Wood’s leadership, the family continues to support local sports initiatives and facilities, encouraging youth involvement in sports and promoting healthy lifestyles.

9. Awards & Recognitions

The Wood family has been honored with numerous awards and recognitions over the years across various domains. Some of these accolades include the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy, the Offshore Europe Lifetime Achievement Award, and a knighthood.

These awards not only affirm the contributions of the Wood family but also underline Ian Wood’s continued commitment to the family legacy across multiple sectors.

10. Private Lives

Despite their vast wealth and influence, the Wood family, including Ian Wood, values their privacy. They do their best to lead normal lives away from the public eye, only appearing for important community events or family business.

Interestingly, this strong desire for privacy has contributed to fostering a sense of intrigue and increased interest around the family, leading to a lot of speculation and discussion about their lifestyle and personal views.

There’s certainly more to Ian Wood and his family than lavish wealth and business laurels. The Woods’ contributions transcend from business to arts, sports, and philanthropy; shaping lives and communities. Armed with unquenchable entrepreneurial spirit, they continue to wield significant influence in Scotland and globally, whilst keeping things privately valuable.

To learn more about the Wood’s remarkable journey, visit:
Wood Group,
The Wood Foundation,
Aberdeen Football Club.