Ross returns to the City as Cosalt chair

DAVID Ross, the co-founder of British mobile phone retailer Carphone Warehouse, has returned to the City as chairman of marine safety group Cosalt, months after he stepped down from this post in the wake of a share disclosure row.<br /><br />In December last year Ross quit a series of high-profile roles when it emerged he had pledged shares in his companies as security against loans for personal investments in the ailing commercial property market.<br /><br />Ross stepped down as chairman of bus and train operator National Express, as a director of self-storage company Big Yellow Group and from the committee organising the 2012 London Olympic Games.<br /><br />The storm that followed the unintentional technical breach of shareholder disclosure rules prompted a series of other company bosses to admit to doing the same. <br /><br />The Financial Services Authority called on directors of companies to disclose any use of shares as security, but said it would not press charges against them because of &ldquo;uncertainties&rdquo; surrounding the rules.<br /><br />Cosalt said that Ross, who owns about 15 per cent equity in the firm and backed the &pound;18.9m equity fundraising in August, would succeed David Hobdey.<br /><br />Hobdey has been acting interim chairman since December when Ross stepped down.<br /><br />Cosalt, which inspects and maintains life-saving equipment such as lifeboats on oil and gas rigs, also said it had appointed Calum Melville as an executive director and Simon Gilbert as a non-executive director.<br /><br />The firm added that it continues to trade in line with management expectations.<br /><br />As well as a return to the City, Ross is stepping back into a family business as his father and grandfather also held directorships at Cosalt before him. A spokesman said Ross had been reappointed because an investigation into his actions had cleared him of wrongdoing.