Vitec boss quits after profit warning

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The Independent Online

Philip Cushing resigned yesterday as chief executive of the broadcast equipment and services group Vitec, one month after the group warned of substantially lower first-half profits.

Mr Cushing, who joined Vitec at the start of last year, resigned with immediate effect. He will be replaced in the interim by Alison Carnwath, the company's chairman. A spokesman for Vitec denied there was "anything sinister" in Mr Cushing's departure coming so close to the profits warning. "The markets have been soft, lots of companies have had profits warnings," he said. Mr Cushing was formerly chief executive of Inchcape, leaving the conglomerate after it was broken up.

Vitec, which makes 50 per cent of its profits providing systems and services to broadcasters, said in June that adverse market conditions in the US had intensified and spread to Europe. The company confirmed its trading statement yesterday, in which it said operating profits for the first six months of this year were expected to be substantially below the £18.8m achieved a year ago.

UBS Warburg, its broker, is forecasting pre-tax profits for the year to 31 December of £32m. Last year it made £34.7m. Vitec shares fell 2.5p to 430p.