Glass maker beefs up its board
Sunday 13 September 1998
The appointments - of Deutsche Morgan Grenfell's Bill Harrison, Laporte chief executive James Leng, and Barclays finance director Oliver Stocken - will give a much needed boost to the glass maker, whose shares have underperformed the market by nearly 30 per cent over the past year.
The trio will join Pilkington's chairman, Nigel Rudd, and chief executive, Paolo Scaroni, in their year-long effort to restructure the company, whose ties on Merseyside date back to the industrial revolution.
Pilkington, based in St Helens, remains the world's largest glass maker. But in June it reported a pre-tax loss of pounds 100m for the year ended March 31 as a result of the restructuring programme launched by Mr Scaroni last year.
The programme calls for a major consolidation of the company's business units in the 19 countries where it operates. Pilkington plans to close, sell, or merge 70 of its scattered businesses by the end of the year, reduce its workforce by 7,500 by March 1999, and in the words of its chief executive transform itself "into one company from a quasi-investment trust controlling many glass businesses around the world."
But the turnaround plan has failed to catch the imagination of investors. At the end of last month, Pilkington's market capitalisation of pounds 850m was 25 per cent below a month earlier - in part because of its businesses in stricken emerging market countries.
The company is hoping the arrival of its three new executive directors will reverse sagging investor sentiment. Mr Harrison is known throughout the City as the former BZW chief executive who moved to Deutsche Morgan Grenfell after Barclays decided to withdraw from trading in shares.
Mr Leng made headlines in August when he was appointed chief executive of specialty chemicals producer Laporte after stepping down from the number one post at packaging company Low & Bonar.
Mr Stocken, Barclays' highly regarded group finance director, and a non- executive director of property group MEPC, was named a non-executive director of the Rank Group in August.
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
Germanwings captain Patrick Sondenheimer tried to break into locked cockpit door 'with an axe' as plane was descending
Amanda Knox murder conviction: Italian court overturns verdict for US student and Raffaele Sollecito in the killing of Meredith Kercher
Saudi Arabia says it won't rule out building nuclear weapons
The battle for the Middle East's future begins in Yemen as Saudi Arabia jumps into the abyss
#FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Co-pilot Andreas Lubitz wanted to 'do something people would remember him for'
iJobs Money & Business
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: To provide a prompt, friendly and efficient se...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: You will be the first point of contact for all...
£18000 - £24000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: HR, Payroll & Benefits Of...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, int...