April 1, 2019 / 1:03 PM / 20 days ago

UPDATE 1-Britain's Intu says no decision yet on new CEO

(Adds details, background, share price)

April 1 (Reuters) - British shopping centre owner Intu Properties said on Monday no decision on out-going Chief Executive Officer David Fischel’s replacement has been made and that it was still looking.

The Sunday Times reported bit.ly/2HROKnQ that Tony Buffin, former finance chief of Britain's largest distributor of building materials Travis Perkins', is seen as the preferred successor to Fischel.

Intu has been struggling with persistent declines in sales from physical stores and a rash of company failures in retail sector forced it to scrap its final dividend in February.

The priority of the new chief executive would be to cut the property giant’s 4.9 billion pounds ($6.42 billion) debt pile, the report said.

Fischel announced his intention to step down in July last year after a 3.4 billion-pound ($4.49 billion) takeover of the company by bigger rival Hammerson fell through.

Shares of Intu have fallen 46 percent since the takeover was formally scrapped on April 25.

$1 = 0.7631 pounds Reporting by Samantha Machado in Bengaluru Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and Shinjini Ganguli

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