Racal plans changes in data communications division

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The Independent Online
RACAL ELECTRONICS, one of the members of Camelot, winner of the bid for the National Lottery, has launched a shake-up of its data communications division, which it admitted had been neglected partly as a result of the lottery bid.

Tim Holley, chief executive of Camelot - a consortium that includes Racal, Cadbury Schweppes, De La Rue, ICL and the US G-Tech - was replaced as head of Racal's data communications division in March by Martin Richardson, formerly in charge of the specialised health and safety and measurement businesses.

Profits in data communications fell from pounds 12.6m to pounds 3.5m last year, helping to depress Racal's 1993-94 pre-tax profits, published yesterday, which showed a slump from pounds 47.7m to pounds 26.4m after pounds 19.6m of losses on disposals, closures and the write- off of goodwill on acquisitions.

Sir Ernest Harrison, chairman, said that Mr Holley had concentrated on developing Racal's private data communications network, including the Government data network which connects 150,000 public sector users, and had made a substantial contribution to Camelot's successful lottery bid. 'I have to admit that Tim didn't do as good a job on the products side of the data communications business,' he conceded.

Cost cuts of pounds 10m had been identified for the division in 1994- 95 and a further pounds 4.3m for 1995- 96, while the aim was to remove pounds 22m from capital employed. Mr Richardson said that about 200 jobs would be lost worldwide.

Racal shares, strong since Camelot won the National Lottery, rose 10p to 248p.

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