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3i Group appoints new CEO

Changes afoot for the UK private equity investor after posting annual loss of £783m.

The 3i Group has reported a loss of £783m for the year ended 31 March 2012 – down from a profit of £186m for the same period last year.

The company's total return fell £656m, compared to a £324m gain the previous year. Diluted earnings per share were 82.8p (2011: 19.5p), while net portfolio return was £425m (2011: £449m).

As of 31 March, net debt was £464m (2011: £522m), while liquidity was £1.65bn (2011: £1.85bn).

In a bid to reverse its falling share price, the British private equity investor has appointed Simon Borrows as its new chief executive officer, replacing Michael Queen. According to 3i, Borrows will focus on shaping the company’s future investment strategy and ensure that the group's operating costs are kept in check.

Adrian Montague, chairman of 3i, said:

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Simon as chief executive. He has already made a significant positive impact as chief investment officer, bringing a fresh focus and discipline to 3i’s investment processes.

Meanwhile, 3i's proceeds from the sale of investments totalled £771m (2011: £609m). Income from the portfolio was £146m (2011: £152m), while the gross portfolio return for developed markets private equity was £263m (2011: £411m).

The debt management business line generated a gross portfolio return of £1m (2011: £39m).

Montague said:

This has been a challenging year for 3i and the stability of the eurozone remains central to the outlook. Whatever the environment, we have a clear set of measures to maximise shareholder value and the returns to our co-investors in our funds.