De La Rue names Cobbold CEO

De La Rue names Cobbold CEO

UK banknote printer De La Rue, in the process of fighting off takeover interest from Oberthur Technologies, has appointed Tim Cobbold chief executive.

Cobbold will join the troubled note manufacturer on 1 January, taking up a role left vacant by James Hussey, who quit in August over paper quality problems at one its UK plants.

De La Rue called in the Serious Fraud Office after establishing that staff "deliberately falsified" paper specification test certificates on banknotes believed to be destined for India. It warned it could lose a customer over the problems and recorded a related £35 million first half charge.

Then, earlier this month the firm confirmed it has received a "highly preliminary and opportunistic approach". The bid from French firm Oberthur, reportedly worth £750 million, was rejected.

Cobbold joins De La Rue from Chloride Group, a power supplier, which has recently been taken over by Emerson Electric. He joined the company in 2007 as chief operating officer before taking over as CEO the following year.

Non-executive chairman Nicholas Brookes, who has been acting as executive chairman since Hussey's resignation, returns to his old role as does group finance director Colin Child who has held the position of COO.

Says Cobbold: "I look forward, with the rest of the Board, to demonstrating De La Rue's fundamental value by building on its core strengths as an independent company and growing value for its shareholders. I look forward to working with the experienced team at De La Rue to strengthen the business and deliver on its potential as the industry leader."

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