Eniro has replaced Jesper Karrbrink as CEO of the Swedish directory company with Johan Lindgren, former CEO of Telenor Sweden.
Eniro’s board is apparently frustrated at the pace of improvement resulting from the new strategy put in place by Karrbrink. In addition, Eniro has violated loan covenants, and may feel it needs a management team that has more experience with lender negotiations. Efforts to work out a new agreement with lenders is likely to consume a substantial portion of the new management team’s time in the coming months.
Here is how Eniro Chairman Lars Berg explained the decision in a company news release:
“Our strategy remains unchanged, we are determined to continue developing our opportunities, with particular emphasis on online. Jesper Kärrbrink has played a vital role in initializing this process and we are grateful for his contributions during the two years he has been CEO. However, in light of these new financial challenges, the Board of Directors believe it is necessary to appoint a new CEO with relevant experience to implement the strategy. We are confident that Johan Lindgren possesses the skills and experience to lead Eniro through the next step in the transformation.”
Along with the management change, Eniro says it will review its financial outlook and announce new targets during its Q3 2011 earnings call. The company is fretting over an accelerating pace of erosion in its print directory product.
Below is a video excerpt from an interview we conducted with Karrbrink in February 2009, less than a year into his tenure at Eniro’s helm. He joined the company in May 2008 with a background in media and gaming. His focus was to reshape Eniro as a company that views its content, or database, as its core asset. His replacement is apparently more a reflection on the pace of execution than the soundness of the strategy Karrbrink implemented.