Gary Allen, one of the Midlands’ best known businessmen who worked for Birmingham industrial giants IMI for 40 years, has died, aged 67.
A former Midlands Businessman of The Year, Mr Allen was chief executive at the Witton-based industrial conglomerate for 14 years from 1986, transforming the firm from a large UK non-ferrous metal manufacturer into a multi-national engineering group.
He was also heavily involved in charity work in the region, and served as West Midlands regional chairman of the Lords Taverners and also chaired the Birmingham Children’s Hospital Appeal.
His son Andy Allen said: “In his business career he was a great character who had a way with people from all walks of life. He worked for IMI for more than 40 years.
“He loved the company and always gave it his all. Although he had to make some difficult decisions in that time he always tried to make them with dignity and as much consideration as possible for Birmingham and its people.
“He was a member of the London Stock Exchange board from 1994- 2007 and appointed as senior independent director in 2004. He was chairman of the LSE Audit Committee from 1995- 2007. During his time on the London Stock Exchange board he helped fight off a series of hostile takeover bids. Charity work was very important to him. Between 1995 and 2000 he chaired the Birmingham Children’s Hospital Appeal, which raised several million pounds.
“He was also heavily involved for much of his life with the Lords Taverners, particularly between 1987 and 1993 when he was West Midlands region chairman. At that time the annual dinner would regularly raise sums of around £50,000 for charity.
“Above all he was a great family man, a wonderful husband, father and grandfather and his family and many friends will miss him very much indeed.”
A service of thanksgiving will be held at Birmingham Cathedral on December 2, starting at 3pm, followed by a separate family cremation.
He leaves a widow Judy and sons Andy, Anthony and James.