New McCarthy & Stone boss plans to reboot business

Aaron Morby 3 months ago
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The new chief executive of retirement living specialist McCarthy & Stone is planning a new strategy to turn the business around.

Tonkiss aims to maximise firm's mass market appeal by increasing the affordability of its homes

John Tonkiss, chief executive officer, will shift the firm’s focus from growth to profit and right-size the business to a steady output of 2,100 new homes a year.

He also aims to slash build costs utilising standard, more efficient designs and optimising subcontract procurement practices.

His cost-cutting programme is targeted to save more than £40m a year by 2021.

Tonkiss, who has already spent four years at McCarthy & Stone as chief operating officer, formally takes the helm today following Clive Fenton’s retirement last month.

Before joining McCarthy & Stone, he spent 10 years at Unite Students, where he held the same role.

Announcing the new strategy, he said: “We are positioning the business to succeed in the current challenging market environment and over the next three years, we will be focusing on increasing shareholder returns by optimising our operations to deliver strong financial performance.

In parallel, we will also aim to leverage our longer term strategic opportunity to increase our customer appeal, diversify our revenue streams and reduce our exposure to the market cyclicality.”

He said this would include an improved offering that broadened affordability, flexibility and choice for customers

“As the market leader in the retirement sector, we need to set the vision for what retirement living should become.

“We are more than just a housebuilder, as we create retirement communities that enrich the quality of life of our customers and their families.

“I believe that our new strategy will further build upon the strong fundamentals in the business, which include an expected 88% increase in the number of people aged 85 and over by 2037, our significant share of the owner-occupied retirement market, and our industry-leading levels of customer service and build quality.”

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