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131.'s new chief plans for sell-offs

24th May 1986, Page 6
24th May 1986
Page 6
Page 6, 24th May 1986 — 131.'s new chief plans for sell-offs
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Which of the following most accurately describes the problem?

• The newest recruit to the British vehicle manufacturing industry, BL's new full-time chairman and chief executive, Graham Day, has been interviewed by our sister journal, Motor Trader, The Canadian-born former British Shipbuilders chief denies that his obvious lack of motor industry experience is going to hinder him in his new job.

"I rather suspect that in a business sense I'm not going to get too many surprises," says I )ay who brings to BL a wealth of business knowledge which he has gained through working on both sides of the Atlantic.

He has worked in road, rail, air and marine transport, was also concerned with the hotel, catering and telecommunications industries and has also practised law. He has worked for other companies which, like BL, have serious financial problems.

"I'm familiar with company problems. I don't panic easily, I have pretty good nerves and pretty good health.

"['in not sure I'd know what to do if I was working for a big money company with no probleins. At least at a company like BL you don't sit behind a desk and wonder what the hell you're going to do because there are always things to do," he told Motor Trader.

Day has signalled that BL companies — Land Rover and Leyland Trucks included — may well be privatised in the near future. He plans to bring "full financial health" to Stateowned BL and reacts sharply to suggestions that if BL companies do become financially fit, they will be ripe for selling off.

"There are two remarks can make to that. The first i that BL is listed on the Lon Stock Exchange, so if you'd like to buy shares you're ab lutely free to do that.

"It's not nationalised. Thf company is technically in thi private sector now. The difference is that because of it historic problems and its col Mailing need for cash, the G eminent is by far the biggeE shareholder.

"My second comment is this. If the businesses are ri turned at a proper time out Government control fully in! the private sector 1 don't th that's a bad thing," says Da: who claims that Jaguar's ma from BL to the "private sec tor" has been good for everybody.

He is quick to point out ti he is not predicting any RI. company will move away fix Government control and int private hands.

"No I can't predict that. I not in the forecasting busin( I'm in the business of realisi sell reality. I don't deceive people, I don't lie and I don' bluff."


People: Graham Day

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