NEWS12 December 2011

Philips resigns as Photon chief executive

Asia Pacific People

US— Jeremy Philips has resigned as Photon CEO after a precarious 18 months for the marketing services group, which owns research firms Auspoll, Jigsaw and The Leading Edge.

Philips, who joined from News Corporation in April 2010, brought the group back from the brink with a recapitalisation and a sale of certain assets that has left the company debt free.

It ran into financial difficulties when it could not meet A$176m worth of earnout payments owed to the owners of agencies it had acquired.

The group has slimmed down from 45 “highly uneven business units” to 14 “more substantial units”, according to a statement.

Announcing his resignation, Philips said: “Now is the ideal time for me to hand over to someone else to lead this company on its next stage of development. It has been a challenging and enlightening journey.”

The search is on for a new CEO and Philips has said he will work closely with the board of directors to manage a “smooth transition” to new leadership.

Chairman Brian Brickmore said: “Jeremy has sharpened the strategy, fixed the balance sheet, streamlined the operating structure and improved operational management. Today we have a debt-free company with a clear, focused strategy and effective management.”