After being fired while on personal leave from the company she co-founded in an ASX announcement that lacked the usual decorum afforded to longstanding leaders, three weeks later former Bubs Australia (ASX: BUB) CEO Kristy Carr says she was 'prohibited from saying goodbye' to her 'amazing' team.
In a heartfelt post on LinkedIn overnight, the founder said she was signing off, although yesterday a bloc of investors including Carr and ousted former chairman Dennis Lin secured more than a 5 per cent stake in the company - the minimum required to call an extraordinary general meeting (EGM).
This afternoon the motivations behind that investment became clear in another post by Carr, who highlighted the launch of the 'SAVE OUR BUBS' campaign to nominate former A2 Milk Company (ASX: A2M) CEO Asia Pacific Peter Nathan as the new CEO and managing director.
"As the founder and Bubs' fourth-largest shareholder, and an expert in the infant formula industry in Australia, USA and China, I have no confidence the current board has the relevant experience to oversee the management and strategic direction of this great company," she said.
"Peter has a proven track record of remarkable sales and profit growth as CEO Asia for A2 Milk Company (ASX: A2M), growing sales from $7 million to $1.4 billion and increasing the market capitalisation from $30 million to $5 billion (166x) throughout his 14-year tenure."
The dissident shareholders are also nominating two non-executive directors in former Elders (ASX: ELD) deputy chairman James Jackson and NZ Nutrition managing director Rupert Soar.
"James has deep ASX board and governance experience, and proven transactional and value creation expertise," she said, adding he had overseen an exceptional turnaround at Elders from 'near liquidation' to a market capitalisation of $1 billion.
"Rupert Soar, an industry executive with 30 years’ international experience in dairy and infant formula supply chain and manufacturing, has been nominated as non-executive director, along with the commitment to run an independent process to appoint two female non-executive directors should the process be successful.
"I wholeheartedly endorse these proposed board appointments and firmly believe this ‘Dream Team’ will enable Bubs to realise its true potential in its next growth chapter to maximise shareholder returns.
"People invest in people. All shareholders should have their say on who should run this great company."
In her post overnight, Carr noted female founder CEOs of ASX-listed companies were a rare breed, and she felt proud and privileged for the experience of starting and leading the company over an extraordinary 18-year journey.
"Creating a brand and growing a business from zero to $100 million turnover that peaked at $800 million market capitalisation when it hit the ASX300, takes a certain amount of zealous tenacity," she wrote.
"Of course, I did not achieve this on my own. Along the way, I surrounded myself with incredibly talented and passionate people who shared my vision to grow happy, healthy families through clean nutrition. I have always believed a positive people-first culture creates high-performance culture.
"To the amazing Bubs Family (past and present) who I was prohibited from saying goodbye to, I want to say a heartfelt thank you."
She wrote that through all the ups and downs, her team found innovative solutions to combat the 'onslaught of challenges', demonstrating 'agility and gumption in finding new growth horizons'.
"I will be eternally grateful for your invaluable contribution to making Bubs a renowned brand in Australia, USA and China," Carr wrote.
"To all the female entrepreneurs and C-suite leaders out there, you never need to apologise for your passion, emotion or undying grit to succeed. They are your best qualities that will deliver your heartfelt mission. The corporate paradigm needs you! Dare to dream, disrupt and make positive change in the world and the workplace.
"There will always be bullies who try to bring you down. Even if they win, they do not define who you are and cannot take away what you have achieved."
This story was updated at 4:30pm from its previous title in the morning of 'Ousted Bubs founder Kristy Carr urges female entrepreneurs, CEOs to rise above bullies'.
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