A group of activist shareholders at embattled Swiss-Irish baked goods company Aryzta have succeeded in their efforts to bring significant changes to the board.
At an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) in Switzerland this morning, shareholders voted out chief executive Kevin Toland from the board of the company.
However, Mr Toland has told the board that he intends to remain on as CEO and act in the best interests of the business and shareholders.
The board of the company had opposed the motion put forward by the activist shareholder group, comprised of investor Veraison and the firm's largest shareholder Cobas Asset Management.
Shareholders have also voted in Urs Jordi as chairman of the board, to replace outgoing chairman Gary McCann.
Two other nominees, Armin Bieri and Heiner Kamps, who were put forward by the activist shareholder group, have also been voted onto the board and the remuneration committee.
Earlier, Annette Flynn announced that she would resign from the Aryzta board after today's EGM.
Aryzta had asked Ms Flynn to remain as a member of the board due to the importance of her role as Audit Committee Chair.
It said this was due to the increased complexities of the financial year-end in light of the resignation of the company's CFO, the recent appointment of new auditors at the 2019 AGM and the challenging financial circumstances arising from Covid-19.
In a statement, the company said that while the board continues to believe that Audit Committee continuity, in these circumstances, represents the best interests of Aryzta, Ms Flynn has accepted the expected decision of shareholders.
Yesterday, the company's choice for chair to succeed Gary McGann – Andreas Schmid – announced that he was withdrawing his candidacy.
Aryzta, the group behind the Cuisine de France brand, confirmed last week that it was in advanced talks with US hedge fund Elliott about a potential takeover.