Scandal-struck Quindell hopes big names will rebuild City image

The company, which was at one stage tipped for the FTSE-100, has been battered by a 70 per cent collapse in its share price

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The Independent Online

The scandal-struck insurance claims services group Quindell is set to appoint a new chairman in the form of the former Prudential UK boss, Richard Rose, according to reports last night.

The company, which was at one stage tipped for the FTSE-100, has been battered by a 70 per cent collapse in its share price since a US hedge fund published doubts about its accounting.

A series of corporate governance scandals followed, meaning it is now in dire need of help to restore its reputation with investors.

The company will hope that Mr Rose will be able to shore up support in the City.

As recently as Friday, Quindell sought to scotch rumours that hirings were imminent.

Mr Rose is also chairman of the online retailer AO.com and the Booker cash-and-carry group.

Sky News, which reported Mr Rose’s hiring yesterday, said Jim Sutcliffe, a former chief of the insurers Old Mutual and the Pru, is to become deputy chairman.

Quindell was unavailable for comment last night.

The pair are also set to be joined by Marisa Cassoni, a former finance director for Royal Mail and John Lewis, in a consultative role. Her appointment will add more heavyweight accounting experience and discipline to Quindell.

Mr Sutcliffe is also said to be bringing in another of his former colleagues, John Tomlins, as a consultant.

Quindell has been chaired by David Currie, a former banker at Investec, as an interim measure since the company’s founder, Rob Terry, quit late last year following controversy over his share dealings. Mr Currie will stay on at Quindell for a while after Mr Rose’s arrival.

There is still, as yet, no replacement named for Quindell’s joint broker Canaccord Genuity, which resigned in November.

Quindell was established to help insurance companies assess and treat drivers and passengers in accidents. It struck a joint venture with the RAC for a major project to install “black boxes” into cars for insurers to monitor driving habits. The plan has been substantially scaled back. Quindell raised £200m from investors in 2013.

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