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Aristocrat Names New CEO

Australia’s Aristocrat Leisure Ltd., the world’s second-largest slot manufacturer, has named Jamie Odell, a former top executive of the Foster’s beer company, as chief executive and managing director. Odell replaces Paul Oneile, who stepped down from the company’s top post in September.

Odell was formerly a divisional managing director of Foster’s Group in charge of its beers, wines, spirits and soft drinks businesses in the Asia-Pacific region. He resigned from Foster’s in December, after being passed over for the top job there when former chief executive Trevor O’Hoy left.

Odell joins Aristocrat as the slot-maker struggles to overcome an extended period of sluggish results, headed up by flat sales in the Americas. His annual A$1.25 million salary is subject to a 100 percent bonus depending on meeting financial and sales targets.

Oneile had been expected to stay in his post until his contract expired December 31, but left unexpectedly in September, causing the company’s board to accelerate the search for a replacement. Board Chairman David Simpson has been serving as CEO in the interim.

Aristocrat’s shares, down some 65 percent for the past 12-month period, rose 5 cents to A$3.90 on the news of the appointment.

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