September 19, 2017 / 7:46 AM / a year ago

Overhauling management, Akzo Nobel hires Intertrust CFO De Vries

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Dutch paint maker Akzo Nobel (AKZO.AS), which rejected a 26 billion euro (23 billion pounds) takeover approach from U.S. rival PPG Industries this year — has hired a new chief financial officer from financial services group Intertrust (INTER.AS).

A worker checks empty Dulux paint cans as they wait to be filled on the production line inside AkzoNobel's new paint factory in Ashington, Britain September 12, 2017. REUTERS/Phil Noble

Maarten de Vries, who joined Intertrust only at the start of this year, will move to Akzo, the maker of Dulux paint, on Jan. 1. He replaces its former CFO Maelys Castella, who stepped down 11 days ago due to illness.

The move underlines dramatic management changes at both companies, each of which has issued a profit warning since July.

De Vries’s appointment follows the resignation of former Akzo Nobel CEO Ton Buechner due to illness in July, while Chairman Antony Burgmans has promised to leave at the end of his term in April.

Under Buechner and Burgmans, Akzo fended off PPG, pleasing employees and Dutch politicians but outraging the company’s foreign investor base.

On Sept. 9, Akzo warned it would miss 2017 financial targets and announced Castella’s departure.

For Intertrust, which provides trust office management and regulatory compliance services, the departure of De Vries follows the announcement by long-term CEO David de Buck that he will not seek reappointment.

De Buck’s decision came after a July profit warning that sent shares to record lows.

At an August presentation of its second quarter earnings, Intertrust said it had put a freeze on M&A activity until it could fully integrate an earlier acquisition and launched a review of its “capital structure.”

Intertrust spokeswoman Marieke Palstra said the departure of De Vries was a personal issue, taking up an opportunity to leave a smaller company for a Dutch blue chip.

“Nothing has changed.” since the company’s August update, she said. The company has launched searches for a new CEO and a new CFO.

Intertrust shares fell 3 percent to 13.75 euros by 0720 GMT, while Akzo was off 0.2 percent at 78.51 euros.

Reporting by Toby Sterling; Editing by Keith Weir

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