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Nigel Stead to leave Lex Autolease

Date: 23 November 2010

Nigel Stead, Lex Autolease, MD

Nigel Stead, boss of top leasing company Lex Autolease, is stepping down in June 2011 after 10 years at the helm.

Rick Francis, currently operations director, will assume the role of contract hire director at the end of the year as part of a succession plan, which coincides with the final stages of Lex Autolease's integration.

Francis was appointed to his current position in March 2009 and more recently took on a lead role in Lex Autolease's integration programme.

He has held a number of senior roles including MD Bank of Scotland Vehicle Finance, Interim MD and finance director for Lex Vehicle Leasing before becoming head of operations for HBOS Mortgage Intermediaries. Prior to joining the group in 2002, he had a career in Life and Pensions brokering and manufacturing.

Stead joined the business in 2000 as MD for the Black Horse Vehicle Management and oversaw the acquisitions of ACL Autolease and First National Vehicle Holdings to create Lloyds TSB Autolease.

Most recently, he was appointed contract hire director of Lloyds Banking Group in March 2009 to lead the combined Lex and Autolease businesses, which operate a fleet of over 300,000 vehicles.

He said: "Next year will sadly be my last, but this is an entirely personal decision, made after much thought and soul-searching. It's gratifying to leave the business in the hands of a talented, devoted and highly experienced team, led by a very worthy successor in Rick.

"I have always made it my business to put our customers' needs first and I'm sure that ethos will continue to emanate through the entire fabric of Lex Autolease. I have had a wonderful time and will miss a great many close friends, colleagues and associates," added Stead.

David Oldfield, MD of Asset Finance and chief operating officer at Lloyds Banking Group Wholesale, said: "Nigel has done a terrific job leading our contract hire businesses in its various guises over many years, including the tremendous task of leading the integration of Lex Autolease.

"I wish him all the very best for the future, but we are also delighted to have Rick taking over as MD. We have every confidence that he will continue the good work Nigel has started in driving Lex Autolease forward and helping the business flourish."

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