Invensys 'saviour' to quit after three years

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Rick Haythornthwaite, the chief executive of Invensys, will on Friday announce that he is stepping down after spending more than three years trying to turn around the troubled engineering company.

Rick Haythornthwaite, the chief executive of Invensys, will on Friday announce that he is stepping down after spending more than three years trying to turn around the troubled engineering company.

He is expected to be replaced by chief operating officer Ulf Henriksson, who joined Invensys last year from Eaton Hydraulics, a US engineering company.

Mr Haythornthwaite has faced a struggle to turn around the one time FTSE 100 company. But the sale of 17 separate businesses and a £2.7bn debt refinancing has put the company on a stronger financial footing.

His departure will be announced at the company's full-year results. Analysts predict that Invensys will report earnings of between £164m to £184m on sales of around £2.9bn.

The company is also expected to announce that it has reduced its pension fund deficit to £585m from £596m that was reported at the last quarter's results. But Invensys will face questions about its Rail Systems division, which needs to secure new orders from Network Rail by the summer or face being restructured.

Mr Haythornthwaite made his name running the cement group Blue Circle, which was eventually sold to the French building materials company Lafarge. He had previously spent 20 years at BP.

Critics said that Mr Haythornthwaite underestimated the scale of the task ahead of him when he arrived at Invensys in October 2001.

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