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Career moves including RB, John Lewis and Sainsbury's Bank

Weekly round-up of CFOs, finance directors and other senior business leaders on the move in the UK and elsewhere.

Laxman Narasimhan to be next CEO of RB

FMCG company, Reckitt Benckiser (RB) has named PepsiCo’s executive Laxman Narasimhan as its chief executive officer. Narasimhan will take up office on 16 July 2019 and will succeed Rakesh Kapoor who is to retire after serving the organisation for 32 years.  He will first join RB as CEO-designate and then executive director to the board and will officially become Group CEO with effect from 1 September 2019.

Commenting on the development, RB chairman Chris Sinclair said: “The Board is delighted to have appointed Laxman as our new chief executive officer after a thorough and rigorous global selection process from a strong bench of internal and external candidates.”

Ofcom begins search for new CEO as Sharon White leaves for John Lewis role

Telecoms regulator Ofcom’s chief executive Sharon White is stepping down to take up a role with UK retailer John Lewis. White has led the organisation since March 2015 and has been instrumental in creating positive conditions for investment for 5G and fibre to the home fixed line broadband services.

“Sharon has been an outstanding Chief Executive for Ofcom and will be missed by the whole organisation. She leaves Ofcom as a regulator with a relentless focus on the consumer interest; making sure people and businesses can get the best out of their communications services.” said Ofcom’s chairman Lord Burns.

Sainsbury’s appoints former RBS executive to head financial services arm

Sainsbury’s Bank has recruited former RBS executive Jim Brown to head its financial services division. Brown has held several senior leadership roles at RBS for 12 years. He will now take up the role of chief executive of Sainsbury’s Bank in June and will replace Peter Griffiths who has been with the bank since 2012.

Speaking upon Jim Brown’s appointment, Sainsbury’s chief executive, Mike Coupe said: “Jim has a wealth of experience and a strong track record of leading banks through significant change, which will help him lead Sainsbury’s Bank through the next stage of its journey.”

Construction group appoints new finance director

Construction company the Cruden Group has taken on board Euan Haggerty as its finance director. Prior to this role, Haggerty was finance and acquisitions director at James Gibb Property Management. He is an associate member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers and has corporate experience with the Royal Bank of Scotland and Arthur Andersen.

Commenting upon Haggerty’s appointment, Cruden Group’s chief executive Kevin Reid said: “Euan’s wealth of experience within the property sector, and in terms of operational finance, makes him an excellent addition to our executive team during the next phase of business growth for Cruden.

Bam Nuttall names new finance boss

Construction and civil engineering company Bam Nuttall has appointed Ruth Dunphy as its finance director. Dunphy has held various senior leadership roles in finance with UK’s civil engineering business from the National Nuclear Laboratory, Carillion and MWH Global. Dunphy replaces Geoff Renshaw who has retired after working with the firm for 17 years.

Everyman Media Group appoints new CFO

Motion pictures and film company Everyman Media Group has taken on board Elizabeth Lake as its chief financial officer, she will take up office from 16 September 2019. Lake has extensive experience in financial and commercial sectors. She has been the finance director at Science in Sport as well as Hugo Boss UK and Ireland. Lake has worked with listed companies including Marks and Spencer, Pearson and Thomson Reuters. She is ACA qualified, having trained at Coopers and Lybrand.

“Elizabeth has a strong, relevant background and experience in the AIM listed business as well as larger multi-site commercial operations. This will be of immense value to our CEO and the senior management team at Everyman as we continue our successful growth story, opening new venues and developing our existing business,” stated Paul Wise, chairman of Everyman.

UltraSoC strengthens management team with appointment of CFO

Monitoring and self-analytics technology provider, UltraSoC has recruited Barney Edgar as its new chief financial officer. Prior to his appointment, Edgar served as head of finance at Arkessa as well as Neul. Edgar brings along 20 years industry experience inclusive of financial roles in corporations, leisure travel group TUI, beverage group Diageo and PwC.

Commenting upon his new role, Barney Edgar said: “It’s an exciting time to be joining UltraSoC, as the company scales and expands with a fantastic customer list. Issues like cybersecurity and functional safety are now everyday concerns for us all: UltraSoC has a huge opportunity to help address those. I’m looking forward to joining the UltraSoC team as they help customers rise to the challenge of creating the next generation of electronic products.”

Morses Club Hires Andy Hayward As Finance Head From eServGlobal

Doorstep lender Morses Club has hired Andrew Hayward as its chief financial officer. He will take up office in July. Prior to joining Morses, Hayward served eServGlobal for two and a half years as CFO. He also held the role of head of finance at Hurricane Energy and PwC.

Speaking about Andrew Hayward’s appointment, Morses’ chief executive Paul Smith said: “We are delighted to welcome Andy to Morses Club. Andy has extensive experience in the mobile technology and digital payments space and will make a significant contribution to the delivery of our strategic plans as we continue to diversify our product offering to serve a broader range of customers across the non-standard credit space.”

Finance director of struggling CCGs resigns

Alistair Mulvey, finance director and deputy accountable officer for the clinical commissioning groups in Staffordshire has stepped down due to personal reasons. Initially, he was responsible for the two CCGs in the north of the county but later was extended to six when the two CCG’ in the north integrated with the four in the south.

Speaking on this occasion, accountable officer of the six CCGs Marcus Warnes, said: “Alistair has been a valued member of the executive team and has contributed positively to the development of the CCGs, the services they commission and the Staffordshire health system. After two and a half years in the post he has decided to pursue career opportunities elsewhere.”

From care assistant to CEO: Sefton Council’s new chief executive

Dwayne Johnson has been appointed as chief executive at Sefton Council. He began his career as a care assistant. He has held varied roles including care assistant, team manager, service manager and assistant director for social services. He also worked as Knowsley’s director of commissioning, policy and housing services.

Antoinette Thorpe named new chief operating officer of Aperture Debt Solutions

Debt management services provider, Aperture Debt Solutions has taken on board Antoinette Thorpe as its new chief operating officer. Commenting upon her appointment, Thorpe said: “I’m very excited to join the talented team working at Aperture. The firm has always had a strong presence in this industry and very impressive growth over the years despite market challenges. I look forward to being part of the continued evolution of the company and helping to deliver service excellence for all stakeholders.”

Ecclesiastical appoints CFO

Insurance and financial services company Ecclesiastical has announced Denise Cockrem as its group chief financial officer. Having led the finance, actuarial, risk and internal audit functions last year, Cockrem will join the board as an executive director from 1 July 2019 subject to regulatory approval. Prior to the appointment, Cockrem has held various senior financial roles with Good Energy Group, Ernst & Young, Barclays, RBS, Direct Line and RSA.

“It’s an exciting time to be working with the Group and I am proud to be part of a company whose purpose is to contribute to the greater good of society. Ecclesiastical has over 130 years’ history as a trusted advisor to its customers. It also works in a way that is different to other financial services groups and through charitable giving has a direct and positive impact on people’s lives,” said Cockrem following her appointment.

OASIS Group appoints new CEO

Records and information management (RIM) provider, OASIS Group has promoted Espen Halvorsen from interim chief executive to chief executive officer with immediate effect. Halvorsen has held various senior executive roles in the industry including global vice president of business development, president of emerging markets Asia, vice president sales Europe and other general manager roles in UK, Norway and Germany.

Speaking on this development, chairman of OASIS Group, Grenville Turner remarked that: “The Board carried out a rigorous selection process. That process, alongside Espen’s effective stewardship of the business in the last few months, left us with no doubt that he is the right leader for this company, and we are delighted to announce the decision to appoint him as Chief Executive Officer for OASIS Group.”


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