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.
- 1 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 2 Tower Bridge glass walkway 'smashed' by night-time visitor dropping bottle of beer
- 3 Anti-gay hate preacher accidentally tweets 4,000 followers cartoon clip of him 'confessing' to be a 'homosexual sodomite'
- 4 Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
- 5 Grayson Perry: London needs affordable housing because 'rich people don't create culture'
Anti-gay hate preacher accidentally tweets 4,000 followers cartoon clip of him 'confessing' to be a 'homosexual sodomite'
Woman opens professional cuddling shop – gets 10,000 customers in first week
Grayson Perry: London needs affordable housing because 'rich people don't create culture'
Kenya bus attack: Al-Shabaab militants slaughter 28 non-Muslims who failed to recite Koran
That Sugar Film director Damon Gameua receives shocking diagnosis after going on healthy sugar diet for just 60 days
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
France 'blocks' Russian sailors from boarding a warship
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services
Myleene Klass: Ed Miliband 'strikes back' by comparing UK's need for Labour's mansion tax to Hear'Say track
iJobs Money & Business
Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Age Concern Slough a...
Voluntary Only - Expenses Reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Crossroads Care is s...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35,000: SThree: We consistently strive to be ...
£50000 - £90000 per annum + benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Markit EDM (CA...