New FD at Wickes as it lays to rest troubled past

The appointment, with effect from January 1 this year, will help put to rest controversy that has dogged the company since senior officials at the firm were charged with fraudulent trading, embroiling the company in a Serious Fraud Office Investigation.

Bhote?s appointment comes as part of a round of recruitment at the firm which has seen many senior positions filled.

Bill Grimsey, chief executive of Wickes, said: ?The successful renewal of the business has laid the foundations for the longer term development of Wickes.He added: ?We will continue to build the team so that we are able to extract even greater value from our unique position in the market place.?

Though becoming director for finance, Bhote will report to the group finance director.

She joins the company after two years at Safeway as financial controller, planning and performance. From 1993 to 1996 she held senior positions with Kingfisher and from 1991 to 1993 was with Abbey National. Early last year it was revealed that an internal investigation at Wickes had unearthed overstated profits of £53m.

Charges of fraudulent trading and making false statements have been brought against Trefor Wilmot Llewellyn group financial director until 1995; Geoffrey Battersby, former group financial controller; Terence Carson, financial director of the main retailing subsidiary; Leslie Rosenthal, trading director; and Henry Sweetbaum, former group chairman and chief executive. The case is expected to be heard later this year.

Wickes trading u-turn lays accounting fraud to rest

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