Amigo recalls Glen Crawford as CEO

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Amigo Loans has renewed his former CEO after a bitter struggle between the founder and the board of directors of the guarantor lender.

Glen Crawford previously led Amigo through its IPO and authorization process with the Financial Conduct Authority, before resigning on medical grounds last year. It remains one of the main shareholders of the company, holding 4.6% of its shares.

Crawford returned to the business as an adviser when it went on sale earlier this year, and on Wednesday the group announced that it will take over on August 1, subject to regulatory approval.

Roger Lovering, independent senior director and acting president, said, “I am delighted that Glen has decided to join the company. He is a natural choice and brings experience and leadership to the company during this difficult time. ”

Amigo is the leading provider of secured loans in the UK, lending to people with poor credit if their friends or family are ready to respond in the event of default. The company has grown rapidly under Crawford’s former tenure as other high-cost credit providers have been affected by increased regulation, but its growing size has caught the attention of FCA and has resulted in an increase in customer complaints over the past year.

His response to complaints and regulatory concerns led to a fierce battle with his maverick founder James Benamor, who attempted to depose the entire board last month.

About 91% of Amigo’s minority shareholders rejected its request to replace its five directors with its two candidates during a vote. However, CEO Hamish Paton and President Stephan Wilcke had previously agreed to step down at the “first appropriate opportunity”.

Benamor welcomed the news of Crawford’s reappointment on Wednesday, tweeting, “Hiring Glen at Amigo was one of the best decisions I have ever made at Amigo. His resignation and the appointment of Hamish were one of the greatest tragedies the FTSE 250 has ever known. ”

Paton was appointed last week as the new general manager of consumer credit for rival Provident Financial.

The conference room dispute also prompted an attempt to sell the business. Amigo said it has drawn the attention of several potential buyers, but a potential deal failed last month. After Mr. Benamor did not depose the board of directors, he said that he would gradually sell all of his 61% stake in the company.

Amigo’s shares rose 24% Wednesday morning to 13.3p before falling below 12p at noon. They have dropped about 80% so far this year.

Crawford said, “I am pleased to have the opportunity to return to the Amigo driver’s seat with the support of the board of directors.” He added that the team “would successfully overcome the challenges the business faces and focus again on meeting the daily needs of our current and future customers, who are otherwise excluded from obtaining credit.”

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