Compass chairman steps down

Sir Francis Mackay is to step down as chairman of the Compass Group after 20 years at the catering company.

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He will leave at the annual meeting in February 2006. It is understood he has had the desire to do so for some time, and a company statement said, ‘the board has been discussing an orderly succession process. In line with that plan, a formal search for a new chairman has commenced.’

Sir Francis began as finance director at the company in the eighties and has been chairman since 1999. He oversaw its expansion from a £250m sales UK business to its present position with more than £12bn sales globally.

Compass is now the world’s largest catering company, but has issued two profits warnings since September.

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