Attallah loses battle at Asprey
Thursday 04 May 1995
"I am looking forward to spending more time with my artistic interests which include publishing and a novel released later this month," the Palestinian entrepeneur said.
The news came as the jeweller to the world's wealthy announced store closures and the appointment of a new non-executive director.
A close friend of John Asprey, majority shareholder of Asprey, Mr Attallah is recognised for his charm and marketing skills, which he used to build up the jewellery business and lead an expansion into the Far East and Eastern Europe.
His remuneration - which,including pension contribution, was more than £520,000 in 1994 - has helped fund many artistic ventures, including the Literary Review and Quartet Books.
Yesterday the company announced the appointment of Howard Dyer, chairman of Hamleys and Ascot Holdings (formerly Control Securities) as non-executive director.
Dealers attributed the rise in Asprey shares yesterday by 5p to 83p to Mr Dyer's reputation as tough negotiator with a good relationship with the banks.
Asprey also announced the closure of seven shops, including one of the five Les Ambassadeurs stores bought two years ago.
Some analysts regarded the closure as evidence of a strategy to spread the group's revenue stream away from the core Bond Street shop by diversifying into high street chains.
Most analysts felt that it was evidence the company was winding up recent acquisition -activity.
"We applaud signs that they are getting to grips with troublesome subsidiaries," said one shareholder.
Stockholders, who have seen shares collapse from a high of 331p in May 1994 to 83p, voiced concern that the changes did not go far enough.
Last year it was disclosed that the loss of a few big-spending customers would seriously depress profits.
Since then rumours have swept the market that the company has received reduced orders from the sultans of Brunei and Oman, two customers whose appetite for jewellery helped the main Asprey store in London's Bond Street provide a substantial proportion of group profits.
The company, which has £149m of stock on its balance sheet, has since launched a group-wide reconstruction programme.
"The company is approaching its considerable problems in a most diffident manner,"one institutional shareholder said.
"Waiting 18 months for the appointment of a new face after hearing the old face no longer fits is not very encouraging.
"We want someone with City credibility who can put the worst type of rumours that have beset the share price to bed."
The boardroom change will not take place until December 1996. Mr Attallah will head the search for his replacement.
Britain First criticised for using actress's memory to draw attention to their 'hate-filled home page'
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Axe wielding man shot dead after attacking four New York policemen on busy street
- 3 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 4 Jimmy Carr's Oscar Pistorius joke goes a bit too far at the Q Awards
- 5 Ottawa shootings: Bruce MacKinnon's cartoon is the perfect tribute to soldier Nathan Cirillo
Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery rumours: 'I'm living a more fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
FCKH8: YouTube reinstates provocative anti-sexism video showing young girls swearing
Axe wielding man shot dead after attacking four New York policemen on busy street
This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
Jimmy Carr's Oscar Pistorius joke goes a bit too far at the Q Awards
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Attacks on 'Ukip Calypso' show how skewed people’s priorities are
iJobs Money & Business
£60000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Compensation and Benefits Manager - Compensat...
£30000 - £35000 Per Annum plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...
£24000 - £28000 per annum + bonus & benefits: Ashdown Group: IT Business Syste...
£50000 - £90000 per annum + benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Markit EDM (CA...