ZIMBABWE – Listed Innscor Africa Limited (Innscor) chairman David Morgan has resigned.

The group is set to notify shareholders of his resignation at its annual general meeting (AGM) next month.

This comes on the back of a management shakeup or restructuring at the diversified group, which saw the appointment of former Ellerines South Africa boss, Antonio Fourie, as new chief executive.

Morgan had served Innscor for 16 years.

The group did not disclose reasons for his resignantion and who succeeds him.

Innscor will also seek shareholders’ approval of Fourie’s appointment at the forthcoming AGM.

John Koumides, Fourie’s predecessor, has since been reassigned to serve as head of corporate finance and Innscor International.

Fourie left Ellerines in February this year and during the same time he also resigned from the troubled African Bank Limited and African Bank Investments Limited in a career spanning 20 years.

Innscor’s management reshuffle was reportedly precipitated by changes in the business model to focus more on regional expansion initiatives following a slowdown in local operations.

Despite recording $1 billion revenue in the year to June 2014, a record in Zimbabwe since dollarisaton in 2009, up 54 percent from $656 million realised prior year, Morgan said the performance of its units was below expectation.

He noted that the group was facing a challenging trading environment for the greater part of the financial year.

“This has been compounded by inefficient management structures in a number of its core businesses, in many cases gross profit margins were also reduced in an effort to stimulate revenues against a backdrop of reducing disposable incomes,” said Morgan.

During the period under review, Innscor recorded an operating profit of $80,56 million compared to $67,4 million previous period and an after-tax profit of $78,8 million against $48,6 million in 2013.

The group’s local Spar operations in retail and distribution, bakery operations and fast food operations performances were subdued and approximately $7 million in one-off cost and restructure provisions were channelled through its statement of profit or loss.

Bakeries and the fast foods subsidiaries recorded a three percent decline in revenue to $261 million as demand for bread declined by 10 percent with 115 million loaves sold, compared to 128 million last year.

“This volume reduction together with an increase in operating overheads combined to produce a poor overall result for the business with profitability significantly lower than that achieved in the prior year,” said Morgan.

November 1, 2014; http://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2014/10/31/innscor-chairman-resigns