Illness forces Assura chief to resign

Graham Roberts has stepped down as chief executive of the Warrington-based healthcare property developer and investor to concentrate on his battle with cancer.

In March, Assura announced Roberts was taking a leave of absence to receive treatment for his cancer. The company told the stockmarket today: “This treatment remains ongoing and Graham now believes that he needs to focus all his energies on his further treatment and recovery, so has therefore decided to step down as CEO with immediate effect. The board will now commence a process to appoint a replacement CEO. As announced in March, Simon Laffin has stepped up to be executive chairman of Assura and will continue to do so until this process is complete.”

Roberts added: “I am very proud of what we have achieved since I became CEO of Assura [in March 2012] in establishing the business as the leading provider of primary care property in the UK today. This is a great example of a company that has both supported local communities and created substantial value for the shareholders. We have built a first class management team and I leave the business in very capable hands. I wish them all every success in delivering the next chapter in the Assura story.”

Simon Laffin commented: “Graham has been a great leader and CEO to this business over the past four years, delivering a period of unparalleled success which has seen the market capitalisation increase from £152m to become a FTSE 250 company valued at over £900m. All of us are greatly saddened by Graham’s illness and resignation, and wish him well. He has left a business in great shape with a fine team. We shall continue to grow Assura and support NHS primary care in the UK.”

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