Patisserie Valerie CEO resigns amid accounting investigation

By Sophie Witts

- Last updated on GMT

Patisserie Valerie CEO resigns amid accounting investigation

Related tags: Luke johnson, Patisserie valerie

The CEO of Patisserie Holdings has resigned amid an ongoing investigation in to the company's accounts.

In an announcement on the London Stock Exchange the group confirmed Paul May has stepped down with immediate effect.

He has been replaced by Stephen Francis, who the company says has a ‘proven track record’ of turning around ailing multi-site businesses.

Francis was previously CEO of pork producer Tulip Ltd, a subsidiary of Danish Crown, and held a turnaround role at meat producer Vion Food Group.   

“[Francis] has a strong track record of restoring value in turnaround situations, especially in the food industry, and the board looks forward to working with him in the revival of the business,” says Luke Johnson, chairman of Patisserie Holdings.

It comes after Patisserie Holdings – which owns the Patisserie Valerie, Philpotts, Baker & Spice, Flour Power City and Druckers Vienna Patisserie café brands - discovered ‘secret’ overdrafts of almost £10m last month,​ which had been withdrawn without the board’s knowledge.  

The group’s finance director Chris Marsh has resigned, and is subject to a criminal investigation.

Earlier this month shareholders approved a rescue deal​ that will see Patisserie Holdings issue £15m in new shares. Johnson has also invested £20m of his own money to keep the 200+ site company trading.

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