Dennis directors go after fierce bid battle

TWO TOP directors of Dennis left the group yesterday just weeks after the bus parts maker was bought by the engineer Mayflower in a hotly- contested pounds 269m bid, writes Francesco Guerrera.

Steve Burton, the chief executive, will step down at the end of the month and could be in line for a payout of around pounds 134, 000. Brendan Geary, the finance director is set to leave in February with a payoff of around pounds 112,000. John Fleming, a Mayflower director, has been appointed chairman of Dennis, now a fully-owned subsidiary of the engineering group.

Sources close to Mayflower, which won Dennis after a fierce bid battle with rival busmaker Henlys, said that the departures were part of a "smooth transition". Messrs Burton and Geary led the Dennis board which backed Henlys' offer until the last days of the bid, arguing that the two businesses had a better fit.