Industry expects slow exit from Centrica boss Laidlaw

Suzie Neuwirth
LONGSTANDING Centrica chief Sam Laidlaw’s widely anticipated departure from the energy firm will not be until at least next year, say analysts.

Speculation has been rife that Laidlaw – who has been at the helm of the FTSE 100-quoted firm for eight years – will move on after his lengthy time at the top. But a new chairman at the end of last year and the resignation of finance director Nick Luff earlier this month means an imminent departure is unlikely. “Investors would be disappointed and concerned if Laidlaw left now,” Peter Atherton, utilities analyst at Liberum Capital, told City A.M.

“It’s not acceptable to change both the chief executive and the finance director in one year.”

Angelos Anastasiou, analyst at Whitman Howard, said he thought Laidlaw might even stay for few more years. “There would be an element of wanting to steady the ship,” he said. Centrica declined to comment.