Vocus founder quits after leadership spill attempt

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Vocus founder quits after leadership spill attempt
James Spenceley

Original pair leave over 'difference of opinion'.

Vocus founder James Spenceley has been forced out of the company alongside fellow board member Tony Grist following a failed leadership coup.

In a statement, Vocus blamed the departures of Spenceley and Grist on a “difference of opinion” between the pair and the remaining members of the board about who should be leading the company.

Grist, the founder of Amcom before it merged with Vocus in 2015, "confidentially" suggested the board should get rid of CEO Geoff Horth some time in early 2017, which was backed by Spenceley.

But when the rest of the board rejected the proposal Grist quit and the other members formally requested that Spenceley leave, too.

The Vocus group has been on a break-neck growth trajectory, merging with both Amcom and M2 to rapidly expand the business.

Chairman David Spence said the leadership change proposed by Grist and Spenceley would “needlessly destabilise the company” and defended their resignations as being “in the best interests of the shareholders”.

“We can now move forward with a fully cohesive board and executive team that can, and will, provide the necessary unity and leadership required to steer the company through an important point in its history,” he said.

Spenceley offered a diplomatic statement on behalf of himself and the Amcom founder, calling their time with the organisation an “incredible journey”.

“This is an opportune moment to also thank those who have supported the business so strongly along the way, especially our customers and our shareholders,” he said.

More to come

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