BAE Systems Appoints Centrica’s Sir Roger Carr as Chairman

on Jun 12, 2013

British defence contractor BAE Systems Plc (LON:BA) has appointed industry veteran and Centrica Plc (LON:CNA) Chairman Sir Roger Carr to replace Dick Olver as BAE chairman. BAE Systems’ share price rose less than one percent in morning trading in London on Wednesday, June 12. Centrica’s share price was also marginally up.

**Sir Roger Carr to Join BAE Systems**
In a statement, the London-based defence contractor announced that Sir Roger would join the company board as a non-executive director and chairman on October 1, and would succeed Dick Olver as company chairman in the first quarter of 2014.
“Sir Roger Carr is the unanimous choice of the Nominations Committee and his proposed appointment has been warmly endorsed by the entire Board,” Nick Rose, BAE’s Senior Independent Director, said in the statement.

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Olver who joined BAE’s board as chairman in 2004 has drawn investor criticism in the past year over BAE’s failed merger with Airbus-owner European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. As Reuters has reported, some of the company’s largest shareholders such as Invesco Perpetual and Henderson Global Investors said that the collapsed deal was symptomatic of a wider and sustained failure to create value for shareholders. Olver’s term was set to expire in May.

Sir Roger, who has been a chairman of British Gas owner Centrica for a decade, will leave the UK energy group on or before the company’s annual general meeting in 2014, with a further announcement of the timing to be made in due course. In a statement, Centrica said that it was starting a search for a new board chairman.
**“Clear Choice”**
In addition to being Centrica’s chairman, Sir Roger is also the outgoing chairman of UK lobby group the Confederation of Business Industry, which represents about 240,000 companies.

“The Company conducted a comprehensive search and Sir Roger was the clear choice,” noted BAE’s Rose, who led the search. “He is an outstanding candidate with two decades’ Board-level experience at the top of UK industry.”
!m[BAE Systems’ share price was 0.06 percent up at 392.83p in London as of 10:15 BST on 12 June 2013](/uploads/story/2990/thumbs/pic_1_inline.jpg)

Sir Roger will join BAE at a time when the contractor is struggling with a decline in defence spending in the U.S., one of the company’s biggest customers. Reuters quoted BAE as saying last month that it was still unable to measure the impact of U.S. government cuts on defence spending, known as sequestration, which started in March and had already caused some contracts to be delayed. In addition, as Bloomberg reported, the UK was also preparing for a new strategic defence review, due in 2015.
Sir Roger noted in the BAE statement that the contractor was “well-positioned in a rapidly evolving industry to face uncertainties around defence budgets and has great opportunities in new geographies and technologies”.
“It is my intention to build on these strong foundations in the years ahead,” Sir Roger added.
**BAE Systems’ share price was 0.06 percent up at 392.83p in London as of 10:15 BST on 12 June 2013. Centrica’s share price was 0.90 percent up at 369.70p.**


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