4Sight ready to heal bruised brand

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4Sight CEO Tertius Zitzke.
4Sight CEO Tertius Zitzke.

Listed technology group 4Sight Holdings says it has laid out new strategies to improve growth as the company battles to turn around its fortunes and spruce up its battered image.

CEO Tertius Zitzke says the company is going through a resurgence and has since addressed the most urgent challenges it has been facing.

He adds the company has also embarked on a massive recruitment drive that will see hundreds join the 4Sight stable next year. “We are looking for 200 skilled people who will join our operations. We are looking for IOT engineers, field engineers as well as accountants. We are posting the job specs on various platforms, including LinkedIn,” Zitzke explains.

“All our business units have presented their strategies for 2020, so we are ready.”

The JSE-listed company has suffered from unabated boardroom squabbles in recent weeks and, along the way, this has damaged the brand.

The company was suspended from the local bourse with immediate effect for non-compliance, including failure to submit financial results, but Zitzke says 4sight will be compliant by Christmas.

He tells ITWeb that Foursight Holdings (FH), the intermediary investment holding company of some of its subsidiaries, had been successfully removed from business rescue.

FH, under the previous board, had applied for business rescue in October, a move that was strongly criticised by the new management team.

Zitzke says: “We settled the matter and removed the company from business rescue. Everything is looking good and we have a professional board now.”

Further, he says, the board remains of the view that on a consolidated basis, the FH operating subsidiaries within the 4Sight group are profitable businesses, which generate large cash reserves.

Turning to the contentious group interim financial results, which led to the JSE suspension, Zitzke says: “We are at the final stage of consolidation and the final review by the auditor is in progress.”

He explains that thereafter, the interim results will be considered by the newly constituted audit and risk committee and board. “Once approved and published, the company will apply to the JSE for the lifting of the suspension,” says Zitzke.

4Sight has been under pressure since August. At the time, a major shareholder demanded a board shake-up.

This was then followed by the resignations of a series of directors. By the time the company was suspended last week, six directors had jumped ship.

The first to go was the chairman of the audit and risk committee. Geoffrey Carter tendered his resignation with immediate effect after “false accusations” were circulated in e-mails by executives, making the situation untenable, the company said in a statement to shareholders.

Chairman Dr Rama Sithanen followed less than 24 hours after. Sithanen was initially scheduled to leave by the end of the year.

CEO of technology group 4Sight Holdings, Vincent Raseroka, and three other directors then quit the company after weeks of bruising boardroom drama.

In a note to shareholders, 4Sight said Raseroka, Gary Lauryssen, Jason du Plessis and Tinus Neethling had left the board.

To bolster its board, the company immediately said Zitzke, Eric van der Merwe, Marichen Mortimer, Johan Nel, Christopher Crowe, Andrew Murgatroyd and Herman Singh had joined the board.

On Friday, 4Sight announced additional board members in compliance with section 3.59 of the listings requirements of the JSE.

In a note to shareholders, 4Sight said it “is pleased to announce the appointment of a Mauritian resident, Mr Kamil Patel, as a non-executive director of the company, with effect from 27 November 2019. This appointment is part of the regularisation process in relation to the required board composition.”

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