Karen Jones leaves Spirit Group

09 January 2006 by
Karen Jones leaves Spirit Group

Spirit chief executive Karen Jones has stepped down from her role, following the company's £2.7b takeover by Punch Taverns.

Punch said in a statement that Jones had left to pursue other interests.

Tony Campbell, Spirit Group chairman, has also decided to leave the business.

Punch chief executive Giles Thorley said: "The vibrant culture which Punch has inherited at Spirit Group is testament to the leadership of Karen and her team and I know that she is very proud of the passion and commitment that is apparent at all levels of the businesses."

Andrew Knight has been appointed managing director of the Spirit business with immediate effect. He has been with Spirit since its inception in 1999, must recently as commercial director.

Jones turned Spirit into the UK's largest managed pub company, with more than 2,000 pubs and 40,000 employees, before the Punch deal.

Jones, co-founder of Café Rouge, joined Punch Taverns in 1999 to develop the Bar Room Bar brand and became chief executive officer of Punch Retail in September 1999.

The division was demerged as privately owned Spirit Group in 2002.

By Chris Druce

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