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WH Ireland chairman and director to step down

WH Ireland chairman and director to step down

The chairman and a non-executive director of wealth manager WH Ireland are set to retire from their roles later this year, with the company promising "good progress" has been made in its recovery plan after a challenging 2018. 

In a statement to the market this morning (October 4) WH Ireland announced Tim Steel and Richard Lee intend to step down from their respective roles as chairman and non-executive director at the end of December. 

The company said it had already begun the search for a successor to Mr Steel, who joined the board in March 2014 and was appointed chairman in January 2016. 

Mr Lee has been a non-executive director at WH Ireland since January 2010 and will continue as a senior adviser to the company as it develops its wealth management business.

Mr Steel said: "Having overseen the implementation of the first phase of our recovery plan and the recruitment of a new senior management team and board, it is time for a new chairman to oversee the next stage of WH Ireland's development. I wish the company every success for the future."

The broker said it had made good progress in its recovery plan despite "challenging market conditions" and is expected to further update the market in its November interim results. 

In November last year WH Ireland reported a loss of £1.9m for the period for the six months to September, compared with a profit of £263,000 for the same period in the previous year.

The losses came after a project to outsource the custodial and operational functions of its business ran over budget.

In March of this year WH Ireland warned profits were unlikely to improve in the immediate future, stating its directors were not confident of any improvement before the end of the financial year amid challenging trading conditions. 

In its final results for the year to March 2019 the company announced a "significant" overall group loss of £11.3m, attributed to reduced revenues, one off costs and "increased exceptional items", and a loss in its wealth management arm of £1.5m. 

rachel.mortimer@ft.com 

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