Interserve restructure paves way for possible break-up

Aaron Morby 3 weeks ago
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Interserve chief executive Debbie White is to step down at the end of the year in a major operational restructure.

White ran the £3bn group for two years through a period of unprecedented uncertainty

The construction group said it would be strengthening its leadership capabilities in each of its three business divisions.

The key operational responsibilities of the chief executive’s office are being devolved to the business divisions, with Mark Morris, currently executive director and chief financial officer, assuming the role overseeing all group functions.

A City analyst said that the move would set out clear responsibilities for each operating division and could also allow for a future sale of part of the group.

“This looks like a precursor to the future splitting up the group,” said the analyst.

Nick Pollard, previously a group non-executive, will chair Interserve Construction, with former Kier director Paul Gandy now in place as managing director.

Nick Pollard (left) and Paul Gandy now lead construction division

The International Construction business will continue to be led by George Franks who will report into Nick Pollard.

At the profitable equipment services division, encompassing RMD Kwikform, Ken Hanna continues as chairman and Ian Hayes as managing director.

Support Services will be chaired by Alan Lovell, recently appointed chairman of Interserve Group. Previous deputy chief financial officer Lynn Mawdsley becomes managing director of the Support Services business.

White said: “The past two years at Interserve have been the most demanding of my professional career.

“As a management team, we fought to deliver a stronger financial platform for the business from which it can move forward.

“While we were ultimately unable to secure sufficient shareholder support for the proposed deleveraging plan, under new ownership, we were able to reduce the Group’s debt which alongside the successful delivery of the company-wide transformation programme, was critical to securing the future of the group.”

Alan Lovell, chairman of Interserve Group, said: “Since joining Interserve Group in July, I have been impressed with the scale and capabilities of the group, alongside the outstanding work we deliver for clients.

“This new operating structure will provide us with increased focus in the right areas and ensure that we are well placed to continue this work.

“By recognising the diversity of the three business divisions and giving each one the right governance and operating framework it will enable them to deliver sustainable growth in the distinct markets they serve.”

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