Hornby appoints new CEO

03 November 2017
Hornby-87973.jpg Hornby
Hornby Plc has announced Lyndon Davies as its new CEO.

Hornby Plc has announced Lyndon Davies as its new CEO. As regular readers and keen collectors will know, Lyndon is Chairman of Oxford Diecast, which celebrates its 25th anniversary during 2018. In addition to this new appointment, he will remain the majority shareholder of LCD Enterprises Limited, the owner of the Oxford Diecast and Oxford Rail brands.

With 40 years’ experience in the industry, Lyndon is highly-experienced and has built Oxford Diecast into a successful international business, focusing on diecast vehicles, aircraft and, more recently, rail based products. Hornby is exploring the opportunity to invest in LCD and promises further information on this matter in due course. It would make some sense if this were to happen as the benefits of resource pooling could be of great interest to both companies, but LCD and its operating companies in China and North America owned and controlled by Lyndon will continue to run as an independent group of companies – so things are to continue as normal for Oxford for now.

As a result of this appointment, Steve Cooke, Hornby's former CEO, stepped down from the board with immediate effect and Lyndon will appoint Tim Mulhall and Simon Kohler as operational consultants who will report directly to him and the Board. Tim Mulhall specialises in building routes to market and strategic sales development. Tim has also spent 20 years as a business entrepreneur in the model and hobby industry, five of which working directly with Hornby through OnTracks, a business which managed the distribution of Hornby international products. Simon Kohler is a highly-respected industry veteran in the model and hobby industry, having spent 35 years with Hornby. During a long career at the Group, Simon worked in many roles, covering most of the brands; notably he worked with Hornby Rail and Scalextric during their most successful years.

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Commenting on the appointment, David Adams, Interim Chairman of Hornby, said “I am delighted to welcome Lyndon to the board. His obvious expertise in and enthusiasm for the toy and hobby industry will provide the Group with experienced leadership for the next stage of our development. Hornby will continue with its Turnaround Plan and Lyndon is ideally qualified to steer the Group through this period."

Oxford Diecast is a family company and in recent years Lyndon's daughter, Eloise, has played a big role in the running of the company. Earlier this year she stepped up to role of Managing Director and continues to expand and promote the Oxford brands under Lyndon's guidance. With Hornby owning the much-loved Corgi brand and with the launch of Oxford Rail in 2015, which is proving to be a very popular brand already, it will be most interesting to observe developments between the two companies in the future. ■