Hochtief AG forced out the top two executives at Leighton Holdings Ltd. and put its Chief Executive Officer Marcelino Fernandez Verdes in charge, as it raised an offer to increase its stake in the Australian builder.
Leighton Holdings Ltd. directors shortlisted two internal candidates to succeed Chief Executive Officer Wal King, the Australian newspaper reported, citing unidentified people familiar with the matter. Frontrunners to make the list were Chief Operating Officer David Stewart and David Saxelby, managing director of the construction company’s Thiess unit, according to the report.
Leighton Holdings Ltd. shares fell the most in more than two years after the Age newspaper said former executives knew of alleged corruption at the company. Australia’s biggest builder said the revelations weren’t new.
Leighton Holdings Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Wal King received support from the company’s controlling shareholder, Hochtief AG, to remain in his role, the Australian newspaper said, citing Leighton Chairman David Mortimer. Mortimer resolved tensions between Hochtief and King, the newspaper reported, without saying how long King might stay in charge.
Bumi Plc, the coal producer that plunged 69 percent last year amid a dispute over control, set up a February showdown with co-founder Nathaniel Rothschild after the financier moved to take over the company.