First non-family member takes charge at Henry Boot

John Sutcliffe
John Sutcliffe
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HENRY BOOT, the Yorkshire property group which dates from 1886, has appointed its first non-family member to run the company.

John Sutcliffe, the current finance director, will become CEO as part of a number of senior management changes which take effect at the end of the year.

With effect from December 31 2015, John Brown, the chairman, and Mike Gunston, non-executive director, will retire from the board having completed nine years’ service.

In a statement, Sheffield-based Henry Boot said: “A succession plan has been considered for some time and, therefore, also on December 31 2015, Jamie Boot will retire as chief executive and replace John Brown as non-executive chairman.

“John Sutcliffe, who has been group finance director for the past nine years, will take over as chief executive and Darren Littlewood, currently the group financial controller, will take over as group finance director, again both with effect from December 31 2015.

“To work with this team, the company has appointed three new independent non-executive directors effective from October 1 2015, allowing for a sensible handover period. Joanne Lake will join as deputy chair and chair of the remuneration committee as well as a member of the audit and nomination committees. She has extensive corporate finance experience and is currently deputy chair of Mattioli Woods PLC and a non-executive director of Gateley (Holdings) Plc.”

The company has appointed Peter Mawson as a non-executive director and chairman of the nomination committee, as well as a member of the audit and remuneration committees and senior independent non-executive director. The company has also appointed Gerald Jennings as a non-executive director, and as a member of the audit, nomination and remuneration committees.

For the last 16 years, he was portfolio director in the North of England for Land Securities PLC where, most recently, he was responsible for the delivery of the Trinity Leeds retail scheme, and is currently serving as the President of the Leeds Chamber of Commerce.

Commenting on the board changes, the chairman, John Brown, said: “Jamie has run the business very successfully for almost 30 years and I can think of no better successor, looking after shareholders’ interests into the future. The business operations and longer term strategic goals of the Henry Boot Group have been extremely well managed by this team, and I feel very confident that Jamie, John and Darren will take Henry Boot from strength to strength in the future.

“The appointees to the board, who will join James Sykes as non-executive directors, bring extensive corporate finance, planning, strategic land and commercial development experience to the company and are, therefore, ideally suited to support our group executive team. I am in no doubt that they will make a strong contribution to the delivery of our strategic goals into the future.”

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