31 March 2004

Smiths Group appoints Donald Brydon as chairman designate

Smiths Group today announced the appointment of Donald Brydon to the Board as non-executive director and chairman designate. His non-executive appointment will be effective from 19 April 2004. Mr.Brydon will succeed current Chairman, Keith Orrell-Jones, on his retirement from the position on 21 September 2004.

 

Commenting on his appointment, Mr.Brydon said; I am delighted to be joining Smiths with its exciting technologies and world leading market positions. I look forward to working with Keith Butler-Wheelhouse and his experienced team and to continuing the implementation of an orderly succession plan over the next five years.

Mr.Butler-Wheelhouse, Smiths Group chief executive said; I am pleased to welcome Donald as chairman designate. His broad experience of business and his city knowledge will complement the skills of the existing Board. Donalds excellent leadership capabilities will help us to take the company through its next phase of growth, generated by investment in new technology, new markets and acquisitions.

In recognition of the current Chairmans contribution he added; Keith Orrell-Jones has taken Smiths through a difficult transition period which has seen us double in size and take up a position in the FTSE 100, as Britains leading specialist engineering company. I feel sure all shareholders, customers and employees will join me in thanking Keith for his unstinting service and valuable contribution. Mr. OrrellJones became Chairman in November 1998, having joined the Board as a non-executive in 1992.

ENDS

Donald Brydon C.B.E.
Donald Brydon is Chairman of Amersham plc, the London Metal Exchange, and AXA Investment Managers SA of which he was also chief executive from 1997-2002.

Graduating in Mathematical Science from the University of Edinburgh in 1967, he continued his association with the University in the Department of Economics in the roles of research associate and tutor until 1970. From 1970 to 1977 he was an analyst and senior fund manager with the (British) Airways Pension Scheme.

Mr.Brydon joined the AXA group in April 1997 after a 20-year career with the Barclays group, during which he built the groups investment arm, now BGI, becoming chairman and chief executive of BZW Investment Management and latterly acting chief executive of BZW.

He is a director of Allied Domecq plc and Scottish Power plc.

He is chairman of the Code Committee of the Panel on Takeovers and Mergers (UK), deputy Chairman of the Financial Services Practitioner Panel and a member of the Market Participants Advisory Panel at CESR.

He is Chairman of EveryChild, the international childrens development charity.

In 2004, Donald Brydon was awarded a C.B.E. for services to the financial industry.