Boss of UK’s largest building contractor quits

The boss of the UK’s largest building contractor has quit the company at the same time as it issued a profit warning for 2014.

Andrew McNaughton, who was chief executive of Balfour Beatty and an executive director of the board stepped down “with immediate effect”, the company said in a statement this morning.

He had worked for the group for 17 years.

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In a separate trading update, the building firm, a contractor partner for many catering equipment distributors, revealed it was now expecting a £30m shortfall in its UK construction business this year.

As a result, overall group pre-tax profits for 2014 are expected to be significantly lower than previous expectations, in the range of £145m to £160m. It said most other parts of the firm were trading in line with expectations, but admitted the update was “disappointing”.

Following McNaughton’s exit, Steve Marshall, Balfour Beatty’s non-executive chairman, will take over as executive chairman on an interim basis.

The firm said the process to appoint a successor to McNaughton would commence shortly.

Marshall said: “Andrew has served the Group for the last 17 years in a wide variety of roles. I would like to thank Andrew personally and on behalf of the board for his major contribution.”

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