Tech distribution company Tarsus, which is being acquired by JSE-listed Alviva, announced on Tuesday that group CEO Miles Crisp and finance director Joanne Tanner have resigned to pursue fresh opportunities.

The company said both have played a key role in leading Tarsus’s growth over the past decade and in positioning the group as one of the leading broad-based ICT distributors in South Africa.

Miles Crisp

Crisp was appointed as Group CEO in 2014 with a mandate from the board and majority shareholder, Investec, to optimise operations, de-risk funding, strengthen governance and facilitate the sale of the group to a new owner, the company said.

“Crisp has achieved these goals, culminating in the announcement last year that Alviva Holdings plans to acquire Tarsus. He believes that this is an opportune time for him to exit the Group in February 2021 and hand the reins to a new leader with a fresh mandate whom will be announced by the board shortly.”

Tanner, who has been with Tarsus for 10 years, is leaving Tarsus in August 2020 to move to a new chapter in her career.

During her tenure, Tanner introduced sophisticated management structures and rigorous processes and systems that have helped the group to become one of the most efficient distributors in Africa.

“The financial oversight, numbers at her fingertips and the data

Joanne Tanner

produced which informs the ongoing running of this organisation, are a testament to her astute ability as a financial director and executive committee member,” the company said.

“She has been so much more than an FD and delved into operational management seamlessly. She has also played an instrumental role in structuring the Alviva transaction.”

“Although we would have been pleased to retain the services of Miles and Joanne after the acquisition, we respect their decision to pursue new careers and wish them well. We thank them for their contributions to the Group over the years—we will miss their wisdom, commitment, steady leadership and deep industry experience,” said Lawrence Barnett, chairman of Tarsus.

He added that Crisp and Tanner both developed strong leadership teams and leave the company with a healthy succession plan.

“The group companies have worked hard at nurturing talent and creating depth and capability in the wider leadership team. We expect a smooth transition to new leaders in the months ahead.”

Subject to the approval of the Competition Commission, Tarsus is set to be acquired by Alviva Holdings. The due diligence process has been completed and other suspensive conditions relating to the transaction have been agreed to by Investec Bank and Alviva.

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