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Kier shareholders 'push for management change'

Kier’s largest shareholders are pushing to oust the company’s top executives following the plunge in its share price, it has been reported.

According to Sky News, shareholders including Woodford Asset Management, which owns 14.2 per cent of the company, want either one or both of chief executive Haydn Mursell (pictured) and finance director Bev Dew replaced.

Fund manager Neil Woodford wants a management overhaul in the next few months and is said to be supported by other shareholders.

Investors are reported to favour external appointments to replace the current CEO and FD.

The move follows a 62 per cent plunge in the company’s share price over the past year after it issued £264m of new shares in November to shore up its balance sheet.

Kier paid £14m in fees to carry out the placement of new shares, two-thirds of which had to be taken up by its underwriters as buyers avoided the stock. These have since been sold on to investors.

It has also emerged today that 57 of Kier’s directly employed staff in Gloucester and Worcester were not paid fully last week, which included overtime worked during the Christmas period.

A Kier spokeswoman said the underpayment was due to an administrative error.

“This administrative error falls short of our usual high standards and we have worked hard to resolve the situation and keep those affected informed.

“We can confirm that all payments were in accounts no later than 11 January, this includes normal working hours and overtime payments over the Christmas period, and any charges incurred as a result of this late payment will be reimbursed in full.”

Readers' comments (3)

  • You will find a few thousand staff want them gone as well. They have in 3 years undone 25 years of great work done by Bus by, Dodds, Sheffield.
    The 57 staff is a bit of journalistic stirring though. 23000 got paid fine its clearly an input error by one clerk and not worthy of a mention in such a serious discussion. Shame on CN for tabloid journalism.

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  • Yes, admin oversight detracts from a serious issue. The Highways investigation seems to be dragging with the ABI rumoured to be talking to Highways England about the backlog of claims and costs. Will past claims will come back to haunt them?

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  • Why not let Bev Dew do another public interview to bolster confidence. It worked so well last time....

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