LONDON (March 23)—SSL International P.L.C. Chief Executive Brian Buchan, who helped turn the company around during the last two years, will step down from his post April 1.
He will be replaced by Gary Watts, financial director and managing director of the firm's European operations. Buchan and SSL gave no reason for the decision, although the company indicated it was a joint decision between Buchan and SSL's board of directors. In a prepared statement, the executive said, "I have enjoyed three challenging years and as the company completes its restructuring, it is a good time for me to move on."
Buchan joined SSL as chief executive three years ago as the firm was wading through the aftereffects of a profits warning in England following the revelation that sales and earnings had been overstated in previous years. He led SSL out of the red, and the controversy, and into the black in 2003. Those allegedly involved in the accounting crisis were charged late last year and face prosecution.