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26 January 2009

SMITHS Group, the global technology company, today opened its new headquarters in central London, completing a reorganisation designed to increase customer focus and significantly cut costs.

Corporate and top divisional management had been based in a 65,000 sq ft building on Finchley Road for almost 30 years, housing some 160 people at its peak.  Smiths will now be run from a modern office, around an eighth the size, in Victoria Street with about 40 staff.

The move, announced in June 2008, completes the refocus of the Group into five divisions sited closer to their core markets and reporting directly to the Chief Executive. The streamlined corporate centre will oversee strategy, resource allocation and compliance.

Initiated by Philip Bowman who became Chief Executive in December 2007, the restructuring is part of a root-and-branch review expected to deliver annual cost savings of £47m within three years.

Mr Bowman said: “Our move to new offices completes the immediate physical reshaping of the group. The tightly-knit headquarters team will provide the proper resource for the divisional management who are now much better positioned to focus on their markets.”

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