John Pluthero will assume management control of both the international and the Europe, Asia and US divisions of Cable & Wireless following the departure of Harris Jones, the international chief executive, this week.
Richard Lapthone, group chairman, said Pluthero was the ideal choice to oversee the division now that the recovery phase in the Europe, Asia and US division was over. The surprise departure accompanied a strong set of interim results from the UK's second-largest telecoms company. Pre-tax profits in the six months to the end of September doubled to £166m (E240m) although this included an exceptional gain of £35m. Revenue fell from £1.7bn to £1.6bn. Gross margins rose to 41 per cent from 35 per cent last year.