Staveley chief quits on profit warning

STAVELEY, the troubled engineering and minerals group, yesterday announced the departure of its chief executive along with a profit warning and the long-awaited sale of its two measurement businesses.

Shares in the group fell 9p to 122p as it revealed that the disposals would cause it to report a pre-tax loss of pounds 74m for the year to 28 March.

The company said Roy Hitchens had ceased to be chief executive "with immediate effect" and the process of finding a replacement had already started. In the meantime Harry Tulley, the chairman, will take over the running of the minerals division while Bob Brown, the finance director, will run the services division.

"Roy began to feel an inability to put the problems right," Mr Tulley said. "He was losing shareholders' confidence."

Mr Hitchens, who was on a two-year rolling contract, was paid close to pounds 600,000 last year. However, Mr Tulley said that this was swelled by pension contributions and that discussions about his pay-off, which had only just started, would only take his basic salary of about pounds 250,000 a year into account.

Staveley has long been criticised by institutional investors for its performance. Guinness Peat Group, the aggressive investment group run by Sir Ron Brierley, has 11.3 per cent of the shares.

Last night Blake Nixon, a director of GPG, said the announcement was "rather disappointing" adding that GPG would be considering its position. "The financial control has clearly been weak," he said.

Staveley has been trying to sell the weighing businesses since last year, when it decided to focus on its services activities. Its Weigh-Tronix subsidiary is to be sold to a management team backed by Berkshire Partners for pounds 44m in cash. But Staveley could not find a buyer for Chronos Richardson. As a result, the company had decided to turn over the division to its management and to ring-fence the possible losses, which could amount to about pounds 7m. But Mr Tulley said that option was much cheaper than closing down the business.

Analysts said the shortfall at Staveley's services division was more worrying. The company said a new management team at Integral, its facilities services business, had reduced the value of work in progress and written off debts with a value of pounds 3.2m. As a result, Staveley Services is expected to make a profit of just pounds 100,000 in the year to March.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooksNow available in paperback
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Sheridan Maine: Regulatory Reporting Accountant

Up to £65,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manager - (communications, testing, DM)

£32000 - £35000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Services Manage...

Guru Careers: Finance Account Manager

£Neg. (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: A Finance Account Manager with...

Ashdown Group: Java Developer - Hertfordshire - £47,000 + bonus + benefits

£40000 - £470000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / J2EE Devel...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas