Matthew Lester has been appointed chairman of Kier’s board of directors with effect from 1st January 2020. He replaces Philip Cox.
The challenge facing the new chairman is to help chief executive Andrew Davies, who himself only joined in April, effect a turnaround of a business that lost £245m before tax in the year to June 2019.
In his executive career, Mr Lester was chief financial officer of Royal Mail plc from 2010 to 2017, having previously been finance director of ICAP. After qualifying as a chartered accountant with Arthur Andersen, he spent the early part of his career with Kleinwort Benson before joining Diageo.
He has been a non-executive director of both Barclays and Capita since 2017 and of Man Group since 2011. However, he will stand down from the Barclays board when he joins Kier.
Matthew Lester said of his new post: "I am delighted to be joining Kier as its chairman. I look forward to working with the board to deliver the group's strategic priorities and in continuing to build the foundations for its future."