* CEO steps down to return to U.S.
* Replacement seconded from majority shareholder Schneider
* Schneider says committed to Aveva’s independence
* Shares fall 5% (Adds shares, analyst reaction)
LONDON, April 27 (Reuters) - UK industrial software Aveva Group said on Tuesday its CEO Craig Hayman was stepping down for personal reasons and would be replaced by Peter Herweck, seconded from its majority shareholder Schneider Electric.
Hayman would leave his post on May 1 to return to the United States, the company said, as it reported flat organic revenue for the financial year that ended in March, hit in the first half by pandemic-related disruptions.
Shares in the FTSE 100 group, which completed its $5 billion acquisition of OSIsoft last month, fell 5% in early deals.
Schneider Electric, which holds a 60% stake in Aveva after merging its industrial software business with Aveva in 2018, said Hayman’s departure did not signal any change in its strategy.
Herweck is currently executive vice president for industrial automation at Schneider Electric and previously worked at Mitsubishi and Siemens.
“We remain as committed as ever to Aveva’s independence and model of operation, and look forward to supporting Aveva’s continued value-creation journey, especially through its merger with OSIsoft,” Schneider Electric Chairman and CEO Jean-Pascal Tricoire said in a statement.
Aveva said that while the impact of the COVID-19 crisis affected it during the first half of its 2020-21 financial year, it recorded double-digit revenue growth during the second half.
The industrial software company said revenue for the year just ended was in line with its previous expectations.
Analysts at Citi said Aveva recorded organic revenue growth of about 1.5% in the first nine months, boosted by strong and early contract renewals, implying a low-to-mid single digit decline in its final quarter.
They also noted that the OSIsoft business grew in mid-to-high single digit, implying growth deceleration.
But they added that they expected consensus expectations to stay broadly unchanged.
Shares in the FTSE 100 group have risen 30% in the last 12 months, riding on the acquisition of OSIsoft, to give it a market cap of 11.75 billion pounds ($16.31 billion).
It said it would publish full-year results on May 25 and would set new targets at a capital markets day on July 1. ($1 = 0.7205 pounds) (Reporting by Paul Sandle; Editing by Susan Fenton)