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Adam Crozier named Royal Mail chief executive

LONDON - Adam Crozier, the former head of the Football Association and former joint chief executive of Saatchi & Saatchi, has been confirmed as the next chief executive of Royal Mail.

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His appointment was confirmed this morning by Royal Mail, including chairman Allan Leighton, who also announced that Elmar Toime, currently chief executive of New Zealand Post, will join as executive deputy chairman of Royal Mail Holdings and will have group-wide responsibilities across Royal Mail and the Post Office.

In a statement, Leighton said: "This combined appointment is the final piece in the new leadership jigsaw. The combination of Elmar Toime's experience in postal services and Adam Crozier's modernising touch is a very powerful cocktail that will ensure the delivery of our renewal plan and restore Royal Mail to being 'the best postal service in the world'."

Crozier becomes chief executive of the Royal Mail Group to lead the transformation of the organisation. He was responsible for leading the highly successful modernisation of the FA, where he was said to have impressed Leighton, who is also a director of Premiership club Leeds United.

Crozier is not underestimating the challenge that he faces and called his new job "the single biggest corporate turnaround programme in the UK today".

"To lead the modernisation of Royal Mail, as part of the new team, is a very challenging and exciting proposition. Royal Mail is one of the best-known brands in the UK with a loyal and committed workforce and this gives us a great base on which to build, so we can deliver for our customers everywhere," Crozier said.

Both Toime and Crozier will report directly to Leighton and will take up their new roles in February 2003.

Toime has been chief executive of New Zealand Post for 10 years and spearheaded its transformation into one of the top-rated postal services in the world.

Crozier takes over from the Royal Mail's current chief executive John Roberts, who stands down at the end of the year. The Scottish Crozier, 38, takes over at a time when the postal operator's losses are running at £1.5m a day and as it is part way through a programme of massive redundancies. The company has already cut 15,000 staff and the axe is poised to fall on a further 15,000.

It also faces the prospect of being broken up after industry watchdog Postcomm said that the market would prosper if the postal delivery was separated out from the rest of the group's operations.

The FA appointed the Saatchi chief in October 1999 for his marketing and media experience as the organisation aimed to become more commercially driven. He had previously advised the FA in its bid to host the 2006 World Cup finals.

Crozier began his career as a management trainee at Mars and then worked for The Daily Telegraph as a sales executive. He joined Saatchis in July 1988 as media group director and, at 26, became the youngest-ever appointee to the Saatchi board.

He was made joint chief executive five years ago, following the departure of the Saatchi brothers, and was replaced by Tamara Ingram, with whom he had been joint chief executive.

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