Carter & Carter finance director quits

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The Independent Online

Carter & Carter's finance director, John Green, yesterday fell on his sword just a day after the company was forced to admit that it could not "accurately assess its financial position".

Mr Green had only been in the job since October 2005, having replaced Julie Pomeroy who left the training provider "to pursue other career interests".

He had previously been the finance director of Assa Training & Learning, the acquisition of which was one of a string of deals pulled off by the late chief executive, Phillip Carter, in the wake of his group's flotation in 2005.

Carter & Carter suspended its shares at 82.5p on Tuesday after the shock announcement, which was the third profit warning the company had issued in four months. It is in urgent talks with its banks to renegotiate its borrowing facilities. Mr Green has agreed to remain with the company to help it through the turmoil.

Carter & Carter has also been without a chief executive since the untimely death of Mr Carter in a helicopter crash in May while travelling back from watching Chelsea's clash with Liverpool in last season's Champions' League.

Since then, the Nottinghamshire company, whose shares reached a high of £12.75 in April valuing it at more than £500m, has run into severe difficulties, failing to land contracts under the Department for Work & Pensions "Pathways to Work" scheme and suffering from poor take-up of the Learning & Skills Council's "Train to Gain" programme.

When the current problems came to light, the company was forced to call in its auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to go through its accounting procedures and assess its financial position. Ironically, Mr Green is a previous employee of the accountancy firm.

It was not known last night whether he will receive a payoff in lieu of notice when he finally leaves, although he is on a 12-month contract.

However, he was not extravagantly paid by the standards of modern executives. The company's most recent annual report says that in the 10 months he worked for the company in its 2006 financial year he received a basic salary of £100,000 plus benefits worth £12,000 and a £24,000 annual bonus alongside a £10,000 pension contribution. That brings his total package for the period under question to £146,000.

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