SYDNEY--Leighton Holdings Ltd. (>> Leighton Holdings Limited) has appointed Bob Humphris as chairman after the Australian construction company was last week shaken by the resignation of three members of its board.
Mr. Humphris is a former managing director of Peabody Resources Pty Ltd., an Australian mining company, and was already an independent director of Leighton.
The sudden departure Friday of former chairman Stephen Johns and nonexecutive directors Wayne Osborn and Ian Macfarlane exposed a rift between the company's top ranks and majority shareholder Hochtief AG (>> HOCHTIEF AG).
The board's "immediate priority" was to fill the other vacant positions with new independent directors, Mr. Humphris said in a statement Monday. He said Hochtief had confirmed it supports an independent board. Hochtief holds about 53% of the Australian company's stock, and has the right to appoint four members of what is usually a 12-person board.
The company, Australia's largest construction contractor, also appointed director Paula Dwyer as deputy chairman.
Write to Rhiannon Hoyle at email@example.com