The failure to merge left Friends in a difficult position especially at atime when credit markets have been reeling. Shareholders, board members and many outside specialists all appeared to favor the proposed merger. In response to the failed merger and the pressure to force Moore to resign the company, pressure was apparent from shareholders as to exactly what Friends planned going forward.
The company announced that Sir Adrian Montague, chairman since 2005, would become the executive chairman until a successor for Moore is found and that he would work with Jim Smart, the current finance director on a strategic review of the company. The strategic review is more than likely another way of saying how the company would find someone else to merge with. Sir Adrian said,
“... this has been a challenging year for the group.” He said while the board remained confident about prospects, “it is right that we should take a hard look at the group’s strategy to ensure that we are delivering the highest value available to our shareholders. The board has concluded that this requires a change in the management team.”
"The board intends to update shareholders on the strategic review by the time of the fourth quarter new business results at the end of January."According to a story by Simon Challis of Reuters analysts have indicated,
In a final twist to the story of the failed merger between Resolution and Friends, Mike Biggs or Clive Cowdery, respectively the chief executive and chairman of Resolution, could be candidates for the top job at Friends ...
The pair are likely to leave Resolution if a 4.9 billion-pound ($10.2 billion) all-cash takeover from arch-rival Pearl succeeds. "They might be interested in Friends, given that they've already seen the book," said Hariharan, (an analyst for Fox-Pitt Kelton).There is a great deal happening here. The stock immediately responded in the positive to the news that Moore was leaving. Keep a close eye on industry moves and what specifically Friends does over the next few months.
Wall Street Journal