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Aukett Swanke shake-up as firm continues to make losses

Aukett swanke bradfield centre approach view 2 image credit daniel romero
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Aukett Swanke has announced a radical shake-up of its board as it confirmed it expects losses to continue this year

The restructuring of the practice, which has studios in London, Bristol and Southampton as well as Germany, Russia, Turkey, UAE, and the Czech Republic, will see chairman Anthony Simmonds step down from the board alongside executive directors Andrew Murdoch and Nick Pill.

The firm revealed in January that it had suffered pre-tax losses of £325,000 in the 12 months to 30 September 2017. This compared with a £927,000 profit in the previous year.

In a trading update, the firm said it expected losses to continue, adding: ‘We expect a larger loss in the first half compared to last year, followed by a profit in the second half.’

Simmonds will retire in March 2019 and will not stand for re-election as chairman at next year’s annual general meeting.

Murdoch is to become the chairman of its Middle East business based in Dubai whereas Pell will remain in the UK business to work on the expansion of the group’s international client base. Robert Fry, currently managing director of the international business, has joined the board.

Speaking earlier this year, Simmonds said the practice had ‘experienced a variety of adverse conditions’ over the year and blamed Brexit for tumbling revenues.

‘In the UK we suffered from the wait-and-see climate for businesses, especially developers of commercial property, created by the continuing uncertainties over the outcome of Brexit,’ he said, adding that ‘new starts were few’.

In an update posted on its website, Aukett Swanke said: ‘These changes achieve part of the group’s longer-term strategy to restructure the board in order to balance the executive and non-executive representation and to provide for future succession.’

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