New chief exec at Travis Perkins

Travis Perkins, the building materials group, said yesterday its long-standing chief executive would retire in the new year, as it posted a 4.1 per cent rise in first-half profit. The firm said Geoff Cooper, chief executive since 2005, would step down as CEO on 1 January and as a director on 6 March. He will be succeeded by John Carter, the current deputy chief executive. Travis Perkins reported an underlying pre-tax profit of £136.1m for the six months to 30 June.