Banknote printer De La Rue CFO Willis steps down in less than two years

(Reuters) - De La Rue Plc DLAR.L said on Friday Chief Financial Officer Helen Willis will step down immediately, less than two years after she took over the role at the London-listed banknote printer and passport maker.

Willis’ exit marks the second big management change at De La Rue, which in October appointed turnaround specialist Clive Vacher as chief executive officer. Soon after he took over, the company said it would conduct a review of its business.

The news is the latest setback for the firm that has issued multiple profit warnings, faces an investigation into suspected corruption and lost a 400 million pound ($525.76 million) contract for Britain’s new passports last year.

Shares of the company were 2.5% lower at 142.6 pence by 1111 GMT. Its stock lost two-thirds of its value in 2019, with De La Rue’s market capitalization standing at 152.3 million pounds, as of Thursday’s close.

De La Rue did not disclose the reason for Willis’ exit. A company spokesman said De La Rue would not be providing details beyond what was in the statement.

The search for a successor had begun, the company said.

The more than 200-year old firm in November had warned of “significant doubt” that it can continue as a going concern and said it would scrap its dividend.

De La Rue’s net debt stood at 170.7 million pounds, as of November.

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni