Seelig joins board of Norman Hay

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The Independent Online
ROGER Seelig, the corporate financier and former defendant in the Guinness trial, yesterday joined the board of the metals and processing group, Norman Hay, his first directorship of a public company since he resigned from Morgan Grenfell over the Guinness affair in 1986.

Mr Seelig was one of the 1980s City whiz-kids before his fall from grace. His trial on charges relating to his involvement in the Guinness takeover of Distillers in 1986 started in September 1991 and was abandoned last February because it was found that Mr Seelig was no longer in a fit state to conduct his defence.

Although he has recently been carrying out advisory work, this is Mr Seelig's first formal public role since the collapse of the trial.

Norman Hay is involved in electroplating, anodising and injection moulding. It fell into the red in 1991 after turnover dropped by nearly a fifth from pounds 13m in 1990, and it set aside more than pounds 2m for relocation and redundancy costs.

Mr Seelig said yesterday: 'I will be bringing my corporate and business experience to bear. It will not be a full-time job. I will devote as many days a week as it requires.'

Mr Seelig was instrumental in putting Morgan Grenfell at the top of the takeover league at the height of the 1980s acquisitions boom, which was worth pounds 13.5bn in 1986. He pioneered a controversial style of aggressive takeover bid. He was in the thick of hotly contested battles such as United Biscuits' skirmish with Hanson over Imperial and Dixons' takeover of Currys.

His appointment comes as part of a management shake-up at Norman Hay announced yesterday. Melvyn Hawley, formerly managing director of Haden MacLellan Holdings, has been appointed chief executive.