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Gatwick finance chief Dunn takes off for job at CityFibre Holdings

Written by on 03/11/2020

Gatwick Airport’s finance chief is taking off after a decade in the job to join one of Britain’s fastest-growing digital infrastructure providers.

Sky News has learnt that Nick Dunn is to be named as chief financial officer of CityFibre Holdings, the Goldman Sachs-backed telecoms group.

Sources said that Mr Dunn’s appointment at CityFibre was likely to be announced next week.

Gatwick airport
Image: Gatwick has seen its finances hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic

His departure from Gatwick will be a blow to the UK’s second-busiest airport, which like its rivals has seen its finances hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.

The airport said in August that it had seen passenger numbers collapse by two-thirds during the first half of the year, and said it would cut roughly 600 jobs – about a quarter of its workforce.

It recorded a loss of £344m for the first half.

A former Centrica executive, Mr Dunn joined Gatwick in 2010, overseeing a period of strong growth in passenger numbers in the years following its sale by the former BAA.

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By joining CityFibre, he will be departing an industry whose future has been left uncertain by the COVID-19 crisis and arriving in one which is at the beginning of an investment boom.

CityFibre, which after Openreach and Virgin Media is often referred to as the UK’s third national digital infrastructure platform, is engaged in a £4bn network rollout programme.

It wants to connect eight million homes and businesses across the UK to full-fibre broadband, and aims to have largely completed the plan by 2025, in line with a government target for expanding Britain’s digital infrastructure.

During the summer, CityFibre announced a three-year recruitment and training programme that is expected to create up to 10,000 jobs.

The company recently appointed Bechtel, the engineering group, to prepare projects covering £1.5bn in construction contracts.

CityFibre acquired TalkTalk’s FibreNation arm earlier in the year, a move which cemented its status as one of the largest competitors to Openreach, a wholly owned subsidiary of BT Group.

It was unclear on Tuesday night whether Gatwick had lined up a successor to Mr Dunn.

CityFibre declined to comment, while Gatwick has been contacted for comment.

 Sky News

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