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Muir steps down from Pumpkin Patch chair

Friday 19th November 2010

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(BusinessDesk) – Greg Muir will step down as chairman of Pumpkin Patch saying his presence has become a distraction. Muir’s previous stewardship of Hanover Finance has led to questions over his fitness to chair the children’s clothing chain.

Muir was chairman of Hanover Group from December 2005 to October 2008, meaning he was there when the group froze $554 million of investors’ funds in 2008.

Devon Asset Management principal Paul Glass and Brian Gaynor, a director of Milford Asset Management, were both reported as saying they wouldn’t support Muir’s re-election as a director because of his role at Hanover.

The Securities Commission today said it would decide before Christmas whether to file criminal charges against the group’s directors, who include the current line-up of Mark Hotchin and David Henry.

“Despite the stellar performance of the company (Pumpkin Patch), it would appear that my leadership of the Pumpkin Patch board is drawing attention away from the business itself,” Muir said. “Rather than allowing this to continue I have decided it would be in the best interests of the Company for me not to seek re-election.”

Muir, who sharpened his retail skills at the coalface of the Warehouse Group, ends a six-year journey with Pumpkin Patch, and chief executive Maurice Prendergast said he had been “an outstanding executive and chairman and we wish him well”.

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