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Sovereign Reversions posts £978,000 loss and appoints chairman

Sovereign Reversions has posted a loss of £978,000 half-year loss, although it says its subsidiary equity release provider Home & Capital made a £25,000 profit.

Home & Capital’s profit compares to a loss of £484,000 for the year ended April 30 2009, while Sovereign made a £1.5m loss over the same period.

Aim-listed Sovereign Reversions has also appointed Robert Charles Michael Wigley from Merrill Lynch as its chairman. Wigley was previoulsy chairman of Merrill Lynch Europe, Middle East and Africa until January 2009.

Sovereign insists that the appointment of a new chairman is completely unrelated to an EGM request by several rebel shareholders earlier in the year to remove the current chairman Paul Spencer and two of the executive directors and place the company into run-off, as this motion was defeated.

During his time at Merrill Lynch, he also sat on the boards of LCH.Clearnet, Euroclear plc and on the EU Advisory Panel of the London Corporation.

Between 2006 and 2009, Wigley was a member of the court of the Bank of England and of its risk policy and audit committees.

Wigley is currently the non-executive chairman of Yell Group.

Wigley is an investor in, and on the advisory board of, the venture capital firm Bluegem and the financial services operating partner of Advent International.

Chief executive Graeme Marshall says: “Bob has an outstanding reputation in the City and will provide invaluable strategic counsel as we seek to build the business more rapidly from the solid foundations we have now constructed.

Our industry has shrunk in the teeth of the recession and many competitors have left the market. Sovereign’s position is now significantly stronger and we are extremely well placed for the acceleration in growth equity release must experience if our ageing population is to enjoy a decent and comfortable retirement.

On behalf of shareholders and management I would like to thank Paul Spencer, our departing chairman, for his significant contribution to the development of our business over the last five years, guiding us from our former position as a niche investment company to an integrated equity release specialist.”

Wigley says: “I am impressed with the market position Sovereign Reversions has established and look forward to supporting the Company as it takes advantage of the opportunities and moves to greater scale in what I think is going to be a very attractive market environment”.

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