Aberdeen reviews GA role as Bennett quits

Fund manager Aberdeen Asset Management is to review its relationship with retained adviser Gavin Anderson following the resignation of GA UK chief executive Neil Bennett.

Aberdeen head of marketing and investor relations Piers Currie said the review would be conducted within the next six months and would not rule out a change of advisers as a result of Bennett’s move.

Bennett has resigned to become managing partner at The Maitland Consultancy. But GA London chairman Richard Constant said Bennett had not been put on gardening leave and was still under contract to continue working for GA.

Constant would not say when Bennett would be released from his contractual obligations with Omnicom, GA’s parent company, but added: ‘There is no set departure date and I am not going to discuss the details.’

Bennett refused to comment beyond confirming that he had resigned from GA and would be joining Maitland.

Maitland executive chairman Angus Maitland said he was still discussing Bennett’s departure with GA but expected that Bennett would take up the role within six months.

‘Neil moved very successfully into the GA business and now needs a bigger tableaux to play on, which is what we can provide him with here,’ Maitland told PRWeek.

Maitland advises around 14 FTSE 100 firms against GA’s four. Two of GA’s FTSE 100 clients are advised jointly with former GA Worldwide vice-chairman Howard Lee. Lee resigned from the firm on 6 April to start The Headland Consultancy (PRWeek, 23 April).

Bennett joined GA in 2002 from The Sunday Telegraph, where he had been City editor for six years (PRWeek, 8 March 2002). He has also been deputy business editor at The Times.

Since taking up the role of CEO at GA Bennett has been instrumental in growing the firm’s UK client base.

In addition to Aberdeen, Bennett helped to bring in venture capital firm TDR Capital, AMEC (PRWeek, 6 December 2002) and Lastminute.com (PRWeek, 16 January).

He was also engaged for the stock market flotation of insurance firm Catlin (PRWeek, 9 March) and is leading the account advising General Dynamics on its £309m agreed takeover of UK arms rival Alvis (PRWeek, 19 March).

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