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The Ministry of Defence has today announced the appointment of Sir John Egan as Chairman of NewDERA, to work with Chief Executive, Sir John Chisolm, in taking the larger part of the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA) into the private sector as a Public Private Partnership. DERA is providing independent scientific advice primarily to the Ministry of Defence but also to an increasing range of private sector civil and military customers. As a result of proposals within the strategic Defence Review aimed at harnessing the value of DERA’s knowledge base for the wider benefit of the UK economy, plans have been developed to create NewDERA as a government owned plc from around three-quarters of the current Agency. The aim is to float the company on the stock market as soon as its potential is suitably developed, which could be as early as 2001. This would allow the privatised company the necessary freedom to exploit its massive technology base which has already produced market winning ideas such as carbon fibres, liquid crystal displays, flat panel loudspeakers and robust speech recognition technology. The initial turnover of the new company will be in the order of GBP750 million, with some 9000 employees. Sir John Egan brings to the role of Chairman extensive experience in leading both Jaguar and British Airports Authority (BAA) to success in the private sector. His substantial achievement as Chairman and Chief Executive of Jaguar plc saw the revitalisation of the company into a competitive and successful luxury car manufacturer. His more recent role as Chief Executive of BAA plc led the company through a significant expansion in its retailing services, and saw the development of sophisticated technical competencies and enhanced customer care.
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