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AusGroup appoints new CEO Shane Kimpton

AUSTRALIAN oilfield services firm AusGroup has appointed a new chief executive and executive director, Shane Kimpton, with effect from July 10.

The 55-year-old replaces outgoing CEO Simon High who was appointed in 2016 to lead the firm through a "very necessary turnaround phase", said the group in a media release on Friday night.

Mr High returned key parts of the group's operations to steady and profitable growth, significantly reduced operating costs through restructuring and improved cashflow, it added. He is stepping down for personal reasons, but will continue in a part-time consultancy role to support the board and ensure a smooth transition.

Mr Kimpton, who is appointed after a 18-month search, has 30 years of experience working in the resources sector in Australia and other countries for operators and contractors including UGL, Transfield Services and ExxonMobil. He was last executive general manager at UGL Asset Services.

Said AusGroup chairman Stuart Kenny of the new CEO: "He brings to the company a demonstrated track record of strategic and operational leadership, delivering outstanding long-term business and EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) growth and improved health, safety and environment (HSE) performance."

The change of CEO at AusGroup comes as the mainboard-listed firm in late June obtained approval from shareholders and regulatory authorities for the proposed swap deal with Ezion Holdings, where AusGroup's debt owed to Ezion were exchanged for AusGroup's shares.

Shares in AusGroup closed at 4.9 Singapore cents, down 0.1 cent, before the announcement on Friday.