Jim Durkin has informed the Board that he intends to retire as Chief Executive. Jim returned to lead the business in 2019, at a very difficult time for UK stockbrokers and successfully kept the Company profitable, led the restructuring of the Board and further strengthened governance.
The Board is pleased to announce that subject to FCA approval, Julian Morse, currently Executive Director and Head of the Growth Companies Team will be appointed Chief Executive. Julian joined Cenkos in its first year of operations and was a founding member of the Growth Companies Team, which he has led since 2016 and which has grown and performed strongly since.
Jim will continue in his role as Chief Executive and as a Director of the Company until Julian's appointment has been approved by the FCA and will then remain with the Company for a short period in order to facilitate a smooth transition of leadership through to March 2021.
The Board is also pleased to announce that subject to FCA approval, Jeremy Osler, Co-Head of Corporate Finance & General Counsel, is being appointed an Executive Director on the Board, in addition to his current role. Jeremy qualified as a lawyer and practiced with Ashurst before joining J.P. Morgan Cazenove and latterly Hannam & Partners. He joined Cenkos in 2016.
The Board has endorsed a strategy and organisational structure, designed to deliver sustainable growth and build shareholder value over the next 3 years and beyond. This strategy focuses on the core strengths of Cenkos and utilising the breadth and depth of talent that exists throughout the Company to continue to deliver exceptional results for its clients.
Commenting on the Board changes, Jim Durkin said:
"I will be leaving the Company in very good shape and I have every confidence that Julian will leverage his 25+ years' experience in the City to successfully lead the Company with the expert help of Jeremy, Lisa and the rest of the Board and Executive Committee. Our offices in London and Edinburgh have led some of the most successful transactions during 2020 including the IPOs of FRP Advisory, Round Hill Music Royalty Fund, Calnex Solutions and HeiQ. Whilst I will be stepping down from the Board, I look forward to watching the Company progress and intend to remain a supportive shareholder."
Julian Morse said:
"I am very excited to be taking over as Chief Executive of Cenkos, at what is a pivotal time for stockbrokers in the UK. With our focus, in particular, on growth companies, and investment trusts, we are well positioned to take advantage of the positive macro trends towards equity markets. Cenkos has always been and will remain nimble and share the entrepreneurial instincts of many of our clients, which enables us to flourish in periods of change.
Our people are our key asset, and I would like to thank them for all their hard work so far this year. We are approaching the end of the year with real momentum and I look forward to us continuing to drive returns for all our stakeholders. "
Chairman, Lisa Gordon said: "This year has been intense, and the challenges of Covid-19 have been well documented. In our case, we have performed well in 2020 and it has reinforced the Board's belief that Cenkos is made up of outstanding people. The Board has a shared vision for the Company's culture and structure going forward, which will provide opportunities for personal and professional development throughout the firm and secure Cenkos' continued success."