Harrison and Brookman return to Cellnet

Harrison and Brookman return to Cellnet

The distributor's founders step back in as board cuts ties with its chairman and managing director

Cellnet has brought back founders, Stephen Harrison and Mel Brookman, to takeover day-to-day running of the company effective immediately.

According to a statement posted to the ASX, Harrison will reassume the managing director's post just four months after the distributor's chief financial officer, Mark Bloomer, took the helm. Harrison quit the company in March 2005 and was replaced by Adam Davenport.

Brookman, Cellnet's director and the interim chairman of spun-off mobility arm, Mercury Mobility, has now stepped in as sales director.

Former Cellnet chairman, Reg Clairs, has also flown his post. The former Woolworths CEO had been in the position for just over 12 months. Cellnet director and CEO of the distributor's largest shareholder, Alexander (Sandy) Beard, has now assumed the role.

Board member, Ian Fraser, is also among the recent casualties.

In a statement, Harrison said the changes were made following a review of the Group and its business strategies.

"To date our performance has been less than satisfactory and we require a fresh approach towards bottom line profit and customer service," he said. "We intend to take this business to a new level and re-evaluate our market strategy in line with current demand within the IT&T channel.

"We operate within an extremely dynamic industry and we need to ensure Cellnet keeps ahead of the curve."

Clairs told ARN Brookman and Harrison had been looking to regain active roles in Cellnet for some time. Both continued to be significant shareholders.

"With the delisting of Mercury Mobility, we needed to rethink the way the organisation was going," he claimed. "Mel and Stephen indicated they wanted to get back into it, and Sandy [Beard from CVC], who is a major shareholder, also wanted more involvement.

"I hadn't intended to stay on forever so opted to step down. I did what I was asked to do when I took over as chairman from Darryl McDonough."

Clairs wished the pair well and was confident they would drive the now streamlined distribution business to growth.

Cellnet shares were trading at $0.80 at close of play on Monday.

More to follow.

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