Picture: ISTOCK
Picture: ISTOCK

Adrian Bock, who helped steer Ellies Holdings back to profits, has resigned as chief financial officer and joint CEO of the lighting and electronic products group.

Ellies, which has fallen firmly into penny-stock territory, will report its first annual profit in four years in July, according to the company’s recent trading statement.

Successive losses weighed heavily on the company’s share price, which plummeted from highs of nearly R10 in 2013 to just 15c in mid-2017.

The company’s share has recovered slightly since then, closing 3% down for the day at 29c on Monday.

Bock, who has been with the company for two years, would step down from his dual role with effect from December 31, Ellies said on Monday.

He had been "an instrumental part of the team that implemented the company’s turnaround strategy".

"Now that the company has returned to a profitable course and the appointment of a new CEO is imminent, Adrian has decided to return to the UK to pursue new interests."

He would be "available to the company" during his contractual notice period of six months, which ended at the end of December. He would also hand over to the to-be-appointed finance chief during the course of the notice period, Ellies said.

The company would start looking for a replacement for the position of finance head, while it was continuing its search for a new CEO. It was also looking for a new lead independent nonexecutive director.

Ellies said in early June that its basic earnings per share for the year ended April would be between 5c and 7c a share, while headline earnings would be between 5.5c and 7.5c a share.

Those figures compared to a basic loss of 39.67c a share and a headline loss of 7.45c a share previously.

Bock told Business Day in December he believed the company was "turning the corner".

"Certainly the turnaround strategy is starting to reflect the results that we hoped for, but we’re vigilant and we need to make sure that we stay the path, which we will do," he said.