Share in plant hire group Speed Hire tumbled more than 35 per cent today as the company warned on profits and announced chief executive Mark Rogerson had stepped down.
Rogerson’s departure after 18 months in the job came just weeks after chairman Jan Astrand congratulated him for the company’s “significant progress” in the 12 months to March 2015.
This is extremely disappointing. I believe that Speedy remains a fundamentally good business but, whilst some progress has been made over the last year, the remedial action programmes have not been delivered as needed.
The fall in share price made it the biggest percentage loser on the London Stock Exchange in early trading.
Read more: Earnings double for Speedy Hire
A lack of available equipment and a focus on strategic accounts rather than small and medium clients were among the factors that led to the poor revenue performance, the company said.
The company, which hires equipment to construction, infrastructure and industrial markets, had earlier said it was going to exit its Middle East market, but said discussions to sell its remaining oil and gas business in the region had been dropped.
A statement released by the company said:
The board continues to explore and evaluate options for this business which, as previously advised, is operating at a break even position.
Group finance director Russell Down has been appointed chief executive with immediate effect, and will also retain the finance role until a replacement is appointment, with Astrand taking on an executive role.