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Brickworks (ASX:BKW) share price rises despite Managing Director retirement

The Brickworks Limited (ASX: BKW) share price is up despite the company announcing the planned retirement of its long-serving Managing Director Lindsay Partridge.

Brickworks is Australia’s largest brickmaker, with other leading brands like Austral Masonry and Bristle roofing. The company is the leading brick producer in the northeast of the US.

Managing Director retirement

Mr Partridge is going to retire on 31 July 2024 having led the business for 25 years as CEO and became Managing Director in 2000.

During his leadership, Brickworks has grown its asset base from $500 million to become a large multinational organisation with an asset base of $6 billion as of 31 March 2024. He has overseen a great increase in the Brickworks share price.

After a “comprehensive internal succession planning process”, the company announced the appointment of Mark Ellenor, who is currently the Brickworks chief operating officer, to be the new CEO.

The Brickworks Chair Robert Millner said:

Mark is well suited to lead Brickworks through the next chapter of growth and performance. Mark brings to the role a deep understanding of brick, rooftile and masonry manufacturing, supply and distribution in Australia and North America. He has delivered on multiple plant rationalisations and capital expenditure programs and the positioning of brick as a style choice to architects through the design studio footprint.

Experience of new leader

Mr Ellenor started with the company as a graduate 25 years ago. He has been President of its North American operations for five years where he led the successful expansion into North America and the extensive plant ‘consolidation’ program that followed.

In August 2023, he returned to Australia and was appointed the COO of Brickworks Group with responsibility for both the building products and property and development businesses.

He’ll be paid a total fixed remuneration including superannuation and car allowance of $1.05 million per year, reviewed annually. He will also have short-term and long-term incentives based on performance targets.

Final thoughts on the Brickworks share price

Mr Partridge has done a very good job of growing the underlying value of the Brickworks, particularly with the decision to unlock value by selling surplus land assets into a joint venture industrial property trust which it owns half of along with Goodman Group (ASX: GMG).

I think Brickworks is a great business and could still be good value with its $6 billion of assets at 31 March 2024. The Brickworks’ market capitalisation is at a sizeable discount to this.

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