Changing guard at Weir Group as Berry replaces retiring Smith

THE chairman of FTSE 100 engineering firm Weir Group yesterday confirmed speculation that he would be stepping down.

Lord Smith of Kelvin, who has chaired the group for over a decade, will leave at the end of the year.

His post will be taken up by Charles Berry who joined the board in March. Berry has been appointed deputy chairman until Lord Smith’s departure.

The news came as Weir reported a sluggish start to the year, with overall orders in oil and gas for the 13 weeks to the end of March down 14 per cent compared to the same period a year ago. Orders for original equipment plunged 32 per cent.

Excluding the contribution from acquisitions, Weir said it expected revenue to be flat or slightly down for the year but it stuck by its latest guidance for low single digit revenue growth this year.

Nomura analyst Juho Lahdenpera said the numbers were “resilient.”