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G4S hit by Olympic security hiring shambles


G4S hit by Olympic security hiring shambles


Shares in British firm G4S slumped after it admitted not being able to recruit enough security guards for the London Olympics.

The shares hit their lowest level in more than six months on fears the fallout from the botched Olympics contract could hit the group’s ability to win new work in the UK and abroad.

The shambles could cost the company as much as 64 million euros and it could also cost Chief Executive Nick Buckles his job.

Buckles will appear before an influential parliamentary select committee this week to explain why his company has failed to deliver the 10,400 security guards it was contracted to do, forcing the government to draft in 3,500 extra military personnel to cover the short fall.

Asked last week if he had considered his position as chief executive, Buckles said: “Of course. I have got to make sure we deliver this contract. What happens there afterwards is down to others.”

“I want to stay. I have been here 27 years, I am very committed to staying. It just depends doesn’t it?”

The Olympics contract – worth the equivalent of 362 million euros – was meant to be a flagship deal for G4S but its failure has now heaped more pressure on Buckles.

He escaped an investor revolt last year following a botched takeover of Danish cleaning firm ISS.

His credibility with investors saved him then, but having admitted that this crisis is bigger than the one he faced with ISS, together with concerns over how the problems will effect G4S’s chances of winning new government work, pressure may increase this time.

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