Montgomery landed £1.3m Mecom payout

The publishing group Mecom paid its former chief executive David Montgomery €1.5m (£1.3m) after he was ousted in January from the company he founded.

Mr Montgomery, a former editor of the News of the World, revealed he had bowed to pressure after a shareholder revolt in September and left the group in January.

Yesterday the group published its full-year results for 2010, which outlined the costs of his departure and that of other executives, which totalled €5.3m. Mecom revealed it had paid €1.5m to Mr Montgomery, and a further €1.2m in "related charges" although not to the former head.

The executive chairman, Stephen Davidson, said: "Through often exceptionally difficult times, David led the group with foresight, tenacity and considerable good grace in the face of challenges on many fronts."

Mr Montgomery, a controversial figure in the media industry who was given the nickname "Rommel", decided to quit after the company's three largest shareholders – Aviva, Invesco and Legal & General – demanded his resignation.

Mr Davidson was appointed to the role of executive chairman after the group's existing chairman Alasdair Locke resigned under pressure from major shareholders following Mr Montgomery in January.

The group has called in headhunter Russell Reynolds to oversee the search for a new chief executive. Mr Davidson will become non-executive chairman when an appointment is made. There was no update yesterday beyond Mr Davidson's remark: "I look forward to introducing our new CEO in the coming months."

Mecom also revealed in its results yesterday that it paid out a further €3.8m to Joop Munsterman and Koos Boot, the chief executive and finance director of the group's Wegener business in the Netherlands, who left over the past year.

Lorna Tilbian, a senior analyst at Numis Securities, said yesterday's results were "encouraging". The group reduced non-adjusted pre-tax losses in 2010 from €146m to €73m. It also slashed net debt from €310m to 62.7m.

Mr Davidson said the results showed "the impact of 2009's successful restructuring", adding: "We have made substantial progress against the key operational and financial targets we have set ourselves. The development of our new media business is on track." The company said it would introduce its inaugural dividend payment this autumn. While digital advertising continues to grow, it could not make up the shortfall in overall advertising revenues, which fell 4 per cent to €656m. Circulation revenue improved slightly, up 1 per cent to €564m.

Yet adjusted earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation rose 28 per cent as the group's restructuring and cost-cutting strategy paid off.

Mr Davidson said: "When I joined the board in January 2009, our agenda was dominated by the urgent need to rebuild Mecom's balance sheet and to rebase our business. This has been achieved and, following the successful restructuring, the management team has made considerable progress in evolving our new operating model."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...

Ashdown Group: IT Manager / Development Manager - NW London - £58k + 15% bonus

£50000 - £667000 per annum + excellent benefits : Ashdown Group: IT Manager / ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Consultant / Telemarketer - OTE £20,000

£13000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Scotland's leading life insuran...

Ashdown Group: Training Programme Manager - City, London

£40000 - £45000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Training Programme Manag...

Day In a Page

Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

The secret CIA Starbucks

The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

One million Britons using food banks

Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

How to run a restaurant

As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
10 best tote bags

Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

Paul Scholes column

I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...