Defence boss to take over at water firm

WATER group United Utilities is recruiting the boss of a subsidiary of Italian helicopter and aircraft maker Finmeccanica to replace outgoing chief executive Philip Green.

United, which provides water and sewage services to about 7m people in north-west England, said Steve Mogford will become chief executive on 31 March when Green steps down.

Mogford is chief executive of electronics firm Selex Galileo, part of Finmeccanica, which owns UK helicopter maker AgustaWestland.

Previously, he was chief operating officer at defence firm BAE Systems, which is in the Eurofighter Typhoon military jet group and is building two new Royal Navy aircraft carriers.

United Utilities announced the departure of Green following weekend newspaper speculation that he would leave the company with a pay-out of more than £4m. His salary and bonus last year totalled about £1.7m.

A United Utilities spokeswoman said Green would not be receiving a payout because he had resigned, but he would be entitled on 31 March to exercise about £650,000 of share options he bought when he joined the company in 2006.

Green has led the utility’s drive to re-focus on water and sewage services after moving into electricity and support services under previous bosses.

Mogford will oversee United Utilities’ £3.6bn plan to modernise and improve ageing water networks in the north-west.

NICK SWIFT,
FINANCE CHIEF,
GO-AHEAD

BRITISH Airways is recruiting a new finance boss with experience in the building and financial services industry as well as transport.

Nick Swift (46) is currently the group finance director of the Go-Ahead Group, a FTSE 250 company employing more than 22,000 people and carrying in excess of1bn passengers a year.

Go-Ahead runs the Southern, Southeastern and London Midland train franchises in partnership with Keolis. It also runs buses in Brighton and elsewhere on the south coast as well as Oxford and Newcastle.

Prior to becoming Go-Ahead’s group finance director in 2007 Swift worked as group finance manager at building materials group Hanson, where he had been responsible for investor relations. Previously he had been head of Hanson’s tax and treasury and a group financial controller.

Swift joined Hanson in 2000 following its acquisition of Pioneer International where he held a number of senior corporate and operational finance roles including European finance director.

Swift has also been group financial reporting manager at Air New Zealand. He joined the airline from Touche Ross, where he qualified as a chartered accountant.