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Chip Hornsby has resigned as group chief executive of UK-based Wolseley plc, effective immediately. Ian Meakins will succeed Hornsby effective July 13, 2009.
"Wolseley has been through a lot in the last 18 months," a Wolseley spokesman said. "There was a consensus on the board that with a portfolio that was appropriate for the market conditions, now was the right time to make this change." Wolseley recently completed a £1 billion capital-raising in April 2009, and disposed of financially troubled Stock Building Supply through a joint venture with The Gores Group.
The search for Hornsby's replacement began "three or four months" ago.
Hornsby joined Wolseley with the acquisition of plumbing distributor Ferguson in 1983. He began serving as chief executive in 2006. In his tenure as chief executive, Hornsby led the drive to reduce costs and improve cash flow in response to increasingly challenging trading conditions arising from the global financial crisis.
Meakins has served as CEO of Travelex Holdings Ltd, an international foreign exchange and payments business, and Alliance UniChem plc.