(Adds analyst comment, details on incoming CEO, background)
Dec 11 (Reuters) - Over-50s tourism and insurance company Saga Plc on Wednesday tapped former Superdry Plc top boss Euan Sutherland as its chief executive officer, replacing Lance Batchelor whose retirement was announced in June.
Sutherland’s appointment is just a few months after activist investor Elliott Management disclosed a 5.14% stake in the company, as it tries to shake off its image as only serving “old people” and revamp its insurance business.
He left Superdry after five years at the helm in April, along with a majority of the board after founder Julian Dunkerton forced his way back into the fashion retailer.
“Alongside a new CEO for the insurance division, this adds stability,” Credit Suisse analysts said, referring to Cheryl Agius’s appointment as chief executive of the insurance unit last month.
The owner of Saga Holidays, Saga Cruises, Titan and Destinology, has been battling margin pressures in its insurance unit. Meanwhile, growing uncertainty over how or when Britain will leave the European Union has hurt its travel business.
In September, the company promised a better second half of the year after saying an overhaul of its insurance business was beginning to pay off, along with newer cruise ships coming into service and improved bookings.
Sutherland, who was also CEO of Co-operative Group until 2014, will take over from Batchelor in January. (Reporting by Tanishaa Nadkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr)
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