Patisserie Valerie boss quits and turnaround specialist steps in

Irving Hamilton
November 17, 2018

In a statement to the stock exchange the company says: "Steve is a strong leader and experienced turnaround Chief Executive with a proven track record of rapid operational performance improvements".

"Since 2005, Steve has completed four successful operational turnarounds of multi-site, global businesses with revenues ranging from £2bn to £200m".

Patisserie Holdings, which is headquartered in Birmingham, has said it has accepted May's resignation with immediate effect and appointed Stephen Francis as his replacement.

The company said Francis had engineered four business turnarounds since 2005, of Tulip, a farming business and producer of pork; Danwood Group, a print services firm; Vion Food Group and Vita Group, a manufacturer of foam and plastics.

Sources told Sky News that May - a long-time business partner of the company's chairman Luke Johnson - had chose to go.

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The chain's shareholders have just approved a rescue deal some days ago.

At the time, he added that he and Mr May were reducing other work commitments to concentrate on the chain's recovery full-time.

Reports recently emerged that May and finance boss Chris Marsh, who was suspended before resigning last month, were issued twice as many shares as was disclosed in official filings.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has opened a criminal investigation into potential fraud at the company.

Shares in Patisserie Holdings, which employs nearly 2,500 staff at 200 shops, remain suspended.

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