Mitchells & Butlers Plc (MAB), the owner of the All Bar One chain, has two “strong” candidates for the role of chief executive officer, Bob Ivell, the company’s executive chairman, said in a conference call today.
“I have a shortlist of two,” Ivell said. “We’ve made good progress.” He added that he doesn’t think the company has suffered from the absence of a CEO since last year.
Mitchells & Butlers has been seeking a permanent CEO since Adam Fowle stepped down in March 2011. Jeremy Blood took over as interim CEO, then resigned last October. Ivell was appointed executive chairman that month.
He said the progress the company has made to date is a “credit” to its management. While no deadline has been set for appointing a CEO, the vacancy for the post is “clearly, always a concern,” he said.
Mitchells & Butlers shares fell as much as 1.7 percent, or 4.2 pence, in London today after the company said in a Regulatory News Service statement that first-half pretax profit declined 2.3 percent to 42 million pounds. Cost pressures will ease in the second half, it said.
Simon Emeny, the managing director of Fuller Smith & Turner (FSTA) Plc, and Mike Tye, the chief executive officer of Spirit Pub Co., both rejected informal approaches by Mitchells & Butlers about the CEO’s job, the Financial Times reported in February, citing people familiar with the situation. The newspaper also reported that Steve Richards, Novus Leisure Ltd.’s CEO, rejected an approach.
Mitchells & Butlers denied it had approached either Emeny or Tye, the Financial Times added.
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