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Fri May 29 2020

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SIG board ousts leadership team

25 Feb The board of SIG, the building products distribution giant, has removed the company’s chief executive and finance director and brought in former Patisserie Valerie boss Steve Francis.

SIG has brought in former pastry chief Steve Francis
SIG has brought in former pastry chief Steve Francis

SIG said that chief executive Meinie Oldersma and chief financial officer Nick Maddock had both resigned ‘with immediate effect’.

Mr Oldersma had been on leave of absence since before Christmas due to a family illness but had returned to work on 10th February.

Steve Francis is regarded as a turnaround specialist. He was brought in by Patisserie Valerie chairman Luke Johnson at the end of 2018 after the café chain was hit by an accounting scandal and the discovery of potential fraud. He was let go when new owners took over in March 2019.

SIG has given him an initial contract until 31st December 2020.

The SIG board said that Steve Francis had “a wide-ranging CEO, CFO and management consulting career” and was “a strong leader with a proven track record of returning radically restructured businesses back to growth”.

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The board has also appointed Kath Kearney-Croft as interim CFO. She joined the company in January 2020 initially to provide support to the executive team during the leave of absence of Meinie Oldersma. Prior to joining SIG, she was group finance director of The Vitec Group plc.

Chairman Andrew Allner said: "The board is most appreciative of Meinie and Nick's contribution to the transformation of SIG. They have led with great determination, energy and urgency in significantly reducing the cost base of the business, improving operating efficiency and completing the disposal of non-core businesses. They leave a much more focused business, a restructured balance sheet and a strong financial position, providing a sound platform for future growth.

"Now that this essential restructuring of the group has largely been completed, the Board believes that it is time for a new leadership team, with skills in driving rapid operational performance improvements through strong customer relationships, excellence in customer service and creating highly engaged teams. Management's focus will be on developing the group's purpose and vision, building on its leading market positions and returning the business back to profitable growth.

"Steve is a widely experienced CEO with a strong track record of returning businesses to growth and so the board has appointed him to help deliver this goal and help build relationships with all stakeholders."

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