Stobart Group

Ticker STOB

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Price Pence
As of 15:56 23 Oct 2018
Market cap. Pound sterling
761.81 million
As of 15:56 23 Oct 2018

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Stobart brings in new finance chiefs after boardroom row

Stobart Group, which has plans to open Carlisle Airport to commercial passenger flights, has announced a number of new board appointments after a row within the company earlier this year.

The former finance chief Richard Laycock left the business hours ahead of a tumultuous annual shareholder meeting last month.

Group commercial director Nick Dilworth becomes executive director and chief operating officer, while Michael Williamson is appointed interim chief financial officer.

Stobart also said Ginny Pulbrook, a co-founder of Citigate Dewe Rogerson and partner at Capital Market Communications, will become a non-executive director, after the company was named earlier this year as one of a handful of companies in the FTSE 350 without a woman on its board.

Stobart sign at airport
Stobart Group

Stobart investigates alleged bullying

Stobart owns Southend airport
Getty Images
Stobart owns Southend airport

Stobart, the owner of Southend and Carlisle airports, has appointed a barrister to lead an investigation "into the concerns raised in recent weeks by certain employees regarding alleged bullying and whistleblowing".

Alice Mayhew, a senior employment barrister at Devereux Chambers, will carry out "an independent investigation", the company said.

Stobart has recently been mired in a boardroom battle where former chief executive Andrew Tinkler attempted to oust chairman Iain Ferguson.

Stobart also said today it had retained Russell Reynolds Associates to find a non-executive chairman, a senior independent director and one or more additional non-executive directors.

Former Asda boss Allan Leighton has ruled himself out after Stobart investor M&G Investment put his name forward to become chairman.

Airports boss explains new flights delay

Directors at Stobart Group say Carlisle airport is still not ready to run a "sustainable" service.

Flights were due to begin in June, but that was postponed until September, and has now been put back to next spring.

Carlisle airport sign
Stobart Group

The earlier delay was based on problems recruiting and training air traffic controllers, but Kate Willard, head of corporate affairs for Stobart Group, says that areas of construction "require additional time to achieve regulatory approval."

There's snagging to do which you would expect on a major infrastructure project of this nature, and then the documentation which really weaves all of that together around staff, process, procedures and systems at the airport."

Kate Willard

Stobart shares soar on news

Stobart Group share graph

The stock market appears to have welcomed that Stobart news. Its shares have soared almost 5% this morning.

Stobart board accused of 'arrogance'

Carlisle Airport

More on that fight for the leadership of Southend and Carlisle Airports owner Stobart.

Andrew Tinkler, the ousted chief executive who was voted back onto the board by shareholder last week, has been speaking out about the board's blocking of the motion.

“This shows an arrogance bordering on contempt for shareholders and employees," he said, adding: "It appears that the AGM vote has been gerrymandered.”

Stobart row continues as chairman refuses shareholder vote

Southend Airport
Getty Images

Shareholders in Stobart Group - which owns Southend and Carlise airports - voted to re-elect the company's former chief executive Andrew Tinkler as a director last week, but the board has blocked the appointment.

Mr Tinkler was fired from the board in June after he pushed for the removal of the company's chairman, Iain Ferguson.

Mr Ferguson said in a statement this morning: "The board maintains the view that, notwithstanding the support of certain shareholders, given the seriousness of his breach of fiduciary duty and the impending court cases against him, it would not be in the best interests of the company for him to act as a director."

He added: "We will be making further board appointments to support the delivery of the next phase of the group's strategy. We have identified an excellent female candidate as a non-executive director and we will recruit a chief financial officer to replace Richard Laycock, who has stepped down from the board."

Stobart finance chief quits ahead of annual meeting

The chief financial officer at Cumbrian firm Stobart Group has resigned just hours before the company's annual general meeting, where directors report to shareholders on the state of the company.

The owner of Carlisle Airport says Richard Laycock won't be putting himself up for election but would continue to support the business.

The AGM of the group is in St Peter Port, Guernsey.

Stobart has been locked in a battle with its former chief executive, Andrew Tinkler, who was dismissed last month.

Stobart bid for airline still not off ground

The Carlisle-based Stobart Group is ending a week full of stock market activity over its plans to buy a share in an airline to go with its two airports.

Stobart Aviation plans to start flights from Carlisle later this year and already owns the increasingly busy Southend airport.

Stobart sign at airport

Earlier this week Stobart told investors it was trying to find a way to have a non-controlling interest in the Flybe airline.

Flybe's shares jumped 36% on the news, and Stobart's inched up by 2%, but the Exeter-based airline then said it had not received an approach from the Cumbrian firm, and its shareholders should take no action.

"There can be no certainty that any firm offer will be made nor as to the terms on which any firm offer might be made," said Flybe.