Co-founder of Britain's Renishaw to step down as CEO

(Reuters) - Renishaw’s co-founder David McMurtry is stepping down as chief executive and will be succeeded by sales and marketing director William Lee, the precision engineering group said on Wednesday.

McMurtry, a prolific innovator named on 47 patents at Rolls-Royce and more than 150 at Renishaw, would retain his role as executive chairman and remain responsible for innovation and product strategy, Renishaw said.

McMurtry co-founded Renishaw in 1973 to commercialise a 3D probe he developed to solve measurement issues faced by Rolls-Royce’s Olympus engines. Under his leadership, Renishaw has steadily grown its revenues.

Renishaw, which supplies products and services used in jet engines, wind turbines, dentistry and brain surgery, said Lee would step into the CEO role on Feb. 1.

Lee, who has a degree in physics and an MBA, joined Renishaw in 1996 in the new product research unit. He headed the laser and calibration product line and machine tool product line before moving to his current role in 2016.

McMurtry said Lee had demonstrated the “leadership capabilities” needed to develop the Renishaw business.

Renishaw, which posts half-year results on Thursday, reported higher first-quarter revenue on the back of strong demand for its precision measuring devices in manufacturing hubs such as the Far East.

Reporting by Esha Vaish in Bengaluru; Editing by Edmund Blair