Scotland business

John Menzies chief executive Forsyth Black steps down

Forsyth Black Image copyright John Menzies
Image caption Mr Black was appointed chief executive of John Menzies in September last year

The chief executive of John Menzies, Forsyth Black, has stepped down after just six months in the post.

His departure came as the Edinburgh-based aviation services group reported a rise in profits and revenue for 2018.

Mr Forsyth was with the group for 19 years, and was credited with reviving the Menzies Distribution business before its sale last year.

The company said in a statement that it had launched "a thorough process" to find a successor.

John Menzies' chief financial officer, Giles Wilson, has been appointed interim chief executive.

Chairman Dermot Smurfit said: "We would like to thank Forsyth for his dedication to the group for the past 19 years and we wish him all the best for the future.

"Led by Giles, we are confident that the strong and experienced team we have in place will move the business forward in the short term.

"Simultaneously the board will immediately undertake a thorough search for a new CEO, both internally and externally."

Image copyright John Menzies

In a separate announcement, Menzies reported a pre-tax profit of £21.6m for 2018, up from £9.9m the previous year.

Revenue from continuing operations also rose, from £1.27bn to £1.29bn.

However, the company warned that overall trading in the first two months of 2019 had been "tempered by soft cargo volumes and continuing difficult labour markets in North America".

It added that the board remained positive about the rest of the year.

Menzies, which has 32,000 employees, provides ground handling and plane fuelling services at more than 200 airports around the world.

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