The market is not fully convinced that the Rogers-Shaw deal will get regularity approval: Analyst
Joe Natale has been replaced as chief executive officer of Rogers Communications Inc. (RCI) less than two weeks after a power struggle was put to bed by a B.C. court.
In a release Tuesday night, RCI said its board selected Tony Staffieri as its interim president and CEO.
In the release, RCI said its board has launched a search to identify its permanent CEO with a mandate to lead the integration of its planned $20-billion takeover of Shaw Communications Inc.
"I thank Joe for his leadership and contributions to our company, including paving the way for our future together with Shaw,” said RCI Chair Edward Rogers in a release.
“While Joe is moving on, we have an experienced interim CEO and leadership team who will continue to focus on the business, return to stability, and closing our transformational merger with Shaw.”
It's a homecoming for Staffieri, who previously served as RCI's chief financial officer prior to his abrupt departure in late September. His exit was the first domino to fall in a chaotic period for Canada's largest wireless telecom company as details emerged of how Mr. Rogers battled with family members who sit on RCI’s board and other directors over the company’s future and the management team that would be in charge.
Mr. Rogers at one point was ousted from his role as RCI's chair, only to subsequently avail himself of his power as chair of the Rogers Control Trust, which holds almost 98 per cent of the company's voting shares, to single-handedly replace five of the company's directors. That led to an unprecedented situation where two sets of directors were claiming to be the rightful board. That dispute was settled on Nov. 5, when B.C. Supreme Court Justice Shelley Fitzpatrick confirmed that Mr. Rogers was within his right to exercise his power as chair of the Rogers Control Trust.
In a statement Tuesday night, Mr. Rogers' mother, Loretta Rogers, as well as his sisters Martha and Melinda maintained their support for Natale and said they opposed the board’s decision to push out Natale, which they described as a “termination.”
"The three of us voted against this misguided decision, which creates great uncertainty for RCI and its employees, customers, sports fans and shareholders, not to mention the Shaw transaction.
“This is simply another instance in which Edward has placed his desire for unchecked control over RCI ahead of basic good governance and responsible corporate stewardship. Joe's contributions to RCI have been numerous, and he has served as an exceptional leader.”