AEA drops 86% after profit alert and CEO's resignation

Shares in AEA Technology slumped 86 per cent yesterday after its chief executive quit in the wake of its second major profits warning in seven months.

The climate change consultancy, which was spun out of the Atomic Energy Authority in the 1990s, has been hit by weaker-than-expected trading at its Washington-based business, PPC.

It also revealed that it is in discussions with Lloyds about its banking facilities and that Andrew McCree, who was chief executive from 2005, has left the company.

Its shares slid 1.7p to 0.28p, valuing the business at just £4m.

AEA works with governments to define environmental policy and helps businesses meet regulations. It was originally the commercial arm within the UK Atomic Energy Authority but in 1994 was spun out of the UKAEA and floated on the stock market two years later.

Under Mr McCree's leadership, it began a series of disposals that included its rail division, which made equipment to remove leaves from railway lines, and a radioactive waste-packaging division.

The company employs around 1,000 consultants.