April 2, 2014 / 8:46 AM / 3 years ago

New Serco boss Soames to join earlier than expected

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April 2 (Reuters) - Incoming Serco Chief Executive Rupert Soames is to get to grips with turning around the British outsourcing firm earlier than planned after the company said on Wednesday he would now join in May rather than June.

Soames, a grandson of former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill who has led power provider Aggreko for 11 years, will now start work on May 1 as opposed to June 1.

A popular appointment, Soames is faced with restoring Serco's reputation as the firm emerges from a ban on new British government work caused by it being found to have charged for tagging criminals who were not being monitored, in prison, or dead.

The scandal rocked Serco and hit its share price, led to its CEO Chris Hyman quitting in October and contributed to warnings on profits, which have already spelt out a tough year ahead.

Soames will lead Serco's bid to win back the government's trust alongside handling a restructuring of its UK business and dealing with slowing income on a key Australian immigration contract and lower levels of new work.

Shares in Serco were up 0.2 percent to 425.5 pence at 0924 GMT, having fallen 32 percent in a year. (Reporting by Neil Maidment; editing by Kate Holton)

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