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SSP CEO Simon Smith to step down

Smith advised the firm’s board that he will be leaving at the end of 2021 to pursue a new opportunity at a private equity-backed business

SSP Group, the food and beverage travel outlet operator, has announced that Simon Smith is stepping down from his role as group CEO.

Smith advised the firm’s board that he will be leaving at the end of 2021 to pursue a new opportunity at a private equity-backed business.

Prior to his exit, Smith will continue his existing responsibilities while supporting SSP with an orderly transition.

In turn, the company has commenced the process to find Smith’s successor, with both internal and external candidates to be considered for the role.

Mike Clasper, chairman of the board at SSP, said: “Throughout the past 16 months, Simon and our executive team have done an excellent job in steering SSP through the enormous challenges presented by the pandemic, acting very rapidly to protect the business and its cash flow, create a more flexible operating model and strengthen the balance sheet.

“SSP has a very clear strategy and significant competitive strengths, placing it in an excellent position to take advantage of the many opportunities for growth that will be presented by the recovery in the travel sector.”

The group was trading at 27% of 2019’s sales during Q3 FY21, with sales in the most recent week rising slightly to 42% of 2019’s figures.

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