Michael sells his shares in Cray

Click to follow
The Independent Online
SIR PETER Michael, the businessman who led the turnaround at Cray Electronics, has sold all his shares in the company for about pounds 12.7m.

Sir Peter, who left Cray's board last month, has taken an early opportunity to cut his links with the company. Cray's report and accounts, which set out his final entitlement under the company's generous management incentive scheme, was only published this week.

This is the second fortune Sir Peter has made from a quoted company. He received about pounds 60m when in 1989 he sold UEI, a high-technology business that he founded, to Carlton Communications. He appeared at joint 148th in the Sunday Times' latest 'rich list'.

Sir Peter and three UEI colleagues - Roger Holland, Jon Richards and Jeff Harrison - invested pounds 2.85m in Cray when they took over the then troubled company in late 1989. Including the shares sold yesterday by Sir Peter, these interests are now worth about pounds 40m.

Sir Peter converted the various classes of incentive share into 5,594,783 ordinary shares, to add to the 3,389,146 he already held. He served notice of his intentions two or three weeks ago, thus securing a conversion price of close to 160p.

SG Warburg Securities placed the whole stake with institutions at a price of 141 1/2 p a share. The mid-market price of Cray's shares yesterday rose 2 1/2 p to 148 1/2 p.

Sir Peter's other interests include the radio station Classic FM, where he is a director and substantial shareholder. He was unavailable for comment yesterday.

Announcing a leap in pre-tax profits from pounds 2.4m to pounds 29m last month, Mr Holland, Mr Richards and Mr Harrison made it clear they have no immediate plans to realise their holdings, which may continue to rise in value.