31 Mar 2011

More changes at the top of GPG

2:45 pm on 31 March 2011

There are more changes at the top of Guinness Peat Group (GPG).

Australian-based executive director Gary Weiss will step down at the end of April, and chairman Mark Johnson will not seek re-election at the company's annual meeting in June.

Dr Weiss won't sever his connection with GPG completely: he'll act as a consultant for the firm, while also continuing to chair Coats, GPG's biggest investment, for at least a year.

Mr Johnson joined GPG last September after it bowed to pressure from investors dissatisfied over the company's direction and the lack of returns from its sprawling $1.3 billion portfolio.

He has been instrumental in setting a new strategy of gradually selling off investments - bar Coats - and returning the proceeds to shareholders.

Mr Johnson says GPG now needs a new head to oversee the sale of its assets.