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Johannesburg - Imperial Holdings Ltd., owner of South Africa’s biggest car dealership network, appointed Mark Lamberti to succeed Hubert Brody as chief executive officer.

Lamberti, 63, founder of retail group Massmart Holdings Ltd. in 1988, will start March 1, the Johannesburg-based company said in a statement today.

Brody, who announced his departure in October, will remain on the board as a non-executive director.

“The appointment was made after an extensive search by the nominations committee, during which a number of external and internal candidates were considered,” the company said.

The stock, which had dropped as much as 3.8 percent earlier today, trimmed lossed after the statement and was down 0.4 percent as of 4:23 p.m. in Johannesburg. - Bloomberg News