EOH appoints Andrew Mthembu as interim CEO

Admire Moyo
By Admire Moyo, ITWeb's news editor.
Johannesburg, 23 Feb 2024
Andrew Mthembu, EOH interim CEO.
Andrew Mthembu, EOH interim CEO.

JSE-listed technology services firm EOH has appointed Andrew Mthembu as interim CEO for a period of six months.

Mthembu’s appointment follows the announcement that Stephen van Coller will step down as CEO in March.

In October last year, Van Coller asked the EOH board not to consider an extension of his five-year contract beyond 31 March 2024, at which time he will officially retire.

In a statement yesterday, the company also revealed that Marialet Greeff, who was appointed as interim chief financial officer (CFO) with effect from 1 November 2023, has now been appointed on a permanent basis.

Greeff replaces Megan Pydigadu, who also resigned from the company last year.

“The EOH board of directors, in consultation with the remuneration and nomination committee, has resolved to appoint Mthembu, currently the independent non-executive chairman of the board, as executive chairman with effect from 1 April 2024,” says the firm.

It explains that the executive chairman will assume the role and responsibilities of interim CEO for a period of up to six months, or until such time as a new CEO is appointed, following which Mthembu will return to his role as independent non-executive chairman.

Mthembu was appointed chairman of the firm in February 2020.

According to EOH, Mthembu possesses the necessary skills and experience to assume the role of executive chairman, ensuring continuity and stability during this interim period.

“His familiarity with EOH’s operations and stakeholders will be complemented by support from the chief executive officers of the company's operational business units, namely Marius de la Rey (iOCO South Africa), Brian Harding (International) and Fatima Newman (EasyHQ),” says EOH.

It adds that to support Mthembu in his role as executive chairman, Andrew Marshall – currently an independent non-executive director of the board – has been appointed as lead independent non-executive director with effect from 1 April.

The position of lead independent non-executive director will endure following the appointment of a new CEO and Mthembu’s return to his role as independent non-executive chairman of EOH.

EOH notes the lead independent non-executive director will provide essential checks and balances, safeguarding effective governance at the board level, thereby ensuring the board continues to operate effectively, discharges its responsibilities objectively and remains a custodian of good corporate governance.

The company believes the appointment of the executive chairman will ensure a seamless and stable transition in the leadership of the EOH board, minimise disruptions and maintain operational continuity, until a new CEO is appointed.

“As outlined in the pre-close stakeholder update published on 31 January 2024, Marius de la Rey, Brian Harding and Fatima Newman have signed long-term contracts as chief executive officers of their respective operating divisions, which marks an important milestone for operational continuity within EOH,” the company notes.

“The appointment of an executive chairman provides an opportunity to integrate the roles of Marius de la Rey, Brian Harding and Fatima Newman into the overall EOH group strategy, prioritising the continuity of the current strategic direction.”