Revolution bosses ousted in AGM chaos as crisis grips make-up firm

Revolution bosses ousted in AGM chaos… but trio are reappointed as crisis grips make-up firm

Troubled cosmetics firm Revolution Beauty endured an apparently acrimonious and chaotic annual general meeting yesterday as its biggest shareholder Boohoo staged a rebellion.

Derek Zissman, the chairman, attempted to postpone the meeting amid a proposed boardroom coup by Boohoo, which has a stake of around 26.6pc.

But in a convoluted series of manoeuvres, disclosed last night, the postponement was blocked.

The drama deepened when Zissman, chief executive Bob Holt and finance director Elizabeth Lake were removed from the board.

That left just one director, Jeremy Schwartz, who appointed a new slate of directors including the three who had just been ousted, and will remain in their prior roles.

Investor unrest: Revolution Beauty shares were suspended last autumn amid an accounting scandal

It was the latest bizarre development at a firm whose shares were suspended last autumn amid an accounting scandal.

The company said that, after the AGM, the shares were expected to be restored to trading on London’s junior Aim market ‘imminently’. 

Meanwhile an emergency meeting proposed by Boohoo to take control of the board will be held later this summer.

Revolution Beauty also revealed that the chaos was having wider implications, having ‘received notice from certain key customers… that they would not be prepared to continue doing business with the group during the current uncertainty’.

It added: ‘The company remains convinced that it has the right senior management team in place for the future, and the restoration of trading in its shares on Aim will be concrete evidence that this board is moving the company in the right direction.

‘The Boohoo proposal is a cynical, short-sighted and misguided attempt to engineer a boardroom coup solely for Boohoo’s benefit.’

Boohoo declined to comment.

The upheaval came a week after it emerged that Revolution Beauty is considering taking legal action against co-founder and former boss Adam Minto.

Trading in the shares has been suspended since September after auditors refused to sign off its books for the financial year.

Minto quit with immediate effect in November after the launch of an investigation into the company’s finances.

When the audited accounts were published last month, it revealed the company made £23million less than it had previously reported.

The cosmetics retailer sent a letter to Minto last month alleging that he ‘breached his fiduciary, statutory, contractual and/or tortious duties to the company’.