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Kingfisher Board Thought to be Considering Véronique Laury's Future

Veronique Laury 725 x 500

An article in The Sunday Times suggests that the Kingfisher board is currently considering the future of CEO Véronique Laury.

The board is understood to be concerned about the lack of improvement in profits as a result of Laury's 'ONE Kingfisher' plan, although a source told the publication that Laury does have the board's support and no succession planning is in place.

Any decision on her future at Kingfisher would be most likely made after shareholders have reviewed the Group's annual results, expected in March. 

Following an in-depth review of Kingfisher’s businesses, alongside detailed studies of its customers’ home improvement needs, the Group announced the ONE Kingfisher transformation plan in January 2016. The objective was to return an extra £500m in profits over a five-year duration by leveraging the scale of the business to unify product ranges and buying processes across its UK and overseas chains. 

Kingfisher has seen several management changes across its chains since Laury took the helm, including the departure of B&Q CEO Michael Loeve, who left the business in April 2017 after two years, to become CEO for the Netto business in his home country of Denmark.

B&Q Retail Director, Damian McGloughlin, left in June 2017 after 32 years to become Chief Operating Officer of Bunnings UK & Ireland and a week later, Kingfisher's Chief Sales & Retail Operations Officer Jean-Paul Constant's departure was confirmed after just 10 months in the role.

Daniel Bernard retired as Chairman and stepped down from the Board at the AGM in June 2017, after eight years as Chairman and 11 years on the Board and was succeeded by Andy Cosslett. 

In September 2018, Kingfisher announced that Arja Taaveniku, Chief Offer & Supply Chain Officer, was leaving the business after three years working on creating a consolidated product, buying and supply chain.

A month later, Kingfisher confirmed that CFO Karen Witts had resigned after six years on the Board, to join Compass Group plc as Group Chief Financial Officer.

Kingfisher's overall performance has been pulled up by strong, rapid growth at Screwfix, which has offset poor performance at B&Q and Castorama.  In November, the Group confirmed plans to exit its Russian, Spanish and Portuguese businesses to 'focus on markets where we have, or can reach, a market leading position'. 

Kingfisher's latest share price is 222.80, compared with a five-year high of 438.60 in April 2014.

Source : Insight DIY Team

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27 January 2019

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