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Friday, May 28, 1999 Published at 15:06 GMT 16:06 UK

Business: The Company File

Storehouse chief quits

Soon after a store closure announcement comes news that the chief executive is quitting

The chief executive of the struggling UK retail group Storehouse is to quit.

Keith Edelman is leaving with immediate effect.

Employed on a one year fixed contract, he will receive compensation of between £500,000 and £600,000.

Mr Edelman's resignation comes just eight days after the group, which owns Mothercare and Bhs, warned a fall in sales and the cost of an overhaul at the business would cut its profits in the first half of the year.

The group's shares dived on the warning but bounced back on the news of Mr Edelman's resignation.

Chairman Alan Smith will take on executive chairman status while a replacement is sought for Mr Edelman.

Mr Smith said: "It was mutually agreed that the time had come for Keith to relinquish his role as group chief executive.

"The board would like to place on record their appreciation of the contribution Keith has made in substantially improving the group's profit performance in his five years as group chief executive."

Jobs cull

Storehouse has recently said it is cutting 240 jobs and closing 68 smaller Mothercare stores after a sharp fall in sales and profits.

The redundancies, on top of 200 already announced, come after the company announced that profits dropped by 20% in the latest financial year.

Storehouse warned that future earnings would be hit by tough trading conditions on the high street, and the need for further investment in its stores.

Storehouse profits dropped from £125m to £98m in the year to March.

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