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Chapman, Dempster and Bridge promoted to Countrywide executive team

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  • 08/06/2017
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Chapman, Dempster and Bridge promoted to Countrywide executive team
Professional services director Paul Chapman has been promoted to managing director of Countrywide’s business to business division.

He joins the executive team, which strategically directs the business, alongside fellow new appointees Grant Dempster, chief risk and compliance officer and IT portfolio manager Paul Bridge.

Chapman assumes responsibility for the group’s surveying, conveyancing, asset management and land and new homes businesses.

Paul Creffield will now focus on the commercial side of Countrywide’s business.

The changes come into effect on 1 July 2017.

Countrywide group CEO, Alison Platt, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Paul, Grant and Paul to the executive team. Each of them has had a strong hand in improving our business performance and capability in their respective areas, so it’s only right that we make the most of their expertise at group strategic level.

“Countrywide has a strong and diverse portfolio and it’s important that our most senior leadership team reflects this broad remit. These appointments emphasise our strong commitment to delivering growth and improved operational performance across the group as we continue to build a stronger business for the future.”

Separately, Countrywide announced earlier this week that it has appointed Himanshu Raja as chief financial officer. Himanshu joins the business later this month, taking over from Jim C‎larke, who retires in December.

Countrywide operates estate agency, lettings and financial services across England, Wales and Scotland and its mortgage division completed £15.7bn mortgages in 2017, making it the UK’s single largest mortgage broker.

The new appointments join the existing Countrywide executive team consisting of Alison Platt, Jim Clarke (CFO), Kate Brown (Group HR director), Sam Tyrer (MD, sales and lettings), Paul Creffield, and Peter Curran (MD, financial services).

In its results, pre-tax profits at Countrywide fell 59% to £19.5m in 2016 reflecting the struggling estate agency sector’s results in general.

Income for the year remained relatively flat at £737m (£733.7m in 2015), however, restructuring and exceptional charges through difficult market conditions cost the business an extra £33.1m compared to last year.

This included costs of restructuring the business of £27.7m and goodwill impairment charges of £19.6m.

However, the business said it intended to refocus on the mortgage sector in the coming year. Countrywide arranged 90,262 mortgages in 2016 (up 19% on 2015), for a value of £15.7bn (up 29%) and completed 364,957 valuations and surveys (up 2%). It also almost doubled remortgage levels, from 13% in 2015 to 25% in 2016.

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