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New FD to put Hornby performance back on track

Finance director Nick Stone joins Hornby from software and consultancy group KBC Advanced Technologies

04 Jan 2013

By Richard Crump

model-railway

MODEL RAILWAY maker Hornby has appointed a new finance director as it battles against falling sales and weak demand in its major markets.

Nick Stone joins Hornby, which owns Airfix and Humbrol, on 14 January from software and consultancy group KBC Advanced Technologies, where he worked for 11 years, having joined in 2001 as finance director.

Current finance director Andrew Morris will leave Hornby during the first quarter following an agreed handover period to become chief executive of a privately owned pharmaceutical business.

Frank Martin, Hornby chief executive, said Stone brings "a thorough understanding of working at a strategic level" within quoted companies with international operations.

"I am confident, as we move forward and the management team focuses on improving Hornby's financial performance, that Nick has the skills and the fresh perspective to add significant value," Martin said.

Stone, who also served as interim FD at Accidentcare Group and finance director at Lambert Fenchurch, joins at a difficult time for Hornby.

In November, the group said it would not pay an interim dividend after half-year results slumped. For the six months ended September 30, Hornby fell to a £0.54m pre-tax loss, while sales slipped to £27m from £28.3m in the first half of 2011.

A combination of general weakness in its major markets, disappointing sales of London 2012 merchandise and disruption to supplies contributed to the constrained performance, the company said in a September trading update.

Hornby shares were down 1% in morning trading on the London Stock Exchange.

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