Tiffany Dundson appointed interim CEO of Adapt IT

CEO Sbu Shabalala has been granted a three-month leave of absence to address personal matters.

JSE-listed technology group Adapt IT has granted its CEO Sbu Shabalala a three-month leave of absence to sort out personal matters, following reports that he was behind an assault case.

Adapt IT’s shares fell as much as 13 percent on the back of the reports.

In a JSE SENS announcement, Adapt IT said Shabalala had been granted a three-month leave of absence by its board of directors. Chief commercial officer Tiffany Dunsdon takes over as interim CEO for the period.

In a statement released after the SENS announcement, Shabalala said he had decided to take extended leave. “The last five months have been some of the most difficult of my life. After more than 15 years of the relentless work of building a JSE-listed entity, I need a little respite. Time for rest and self-care while I deal with personal battles,” he said.

Shabalala has further denied the allegations against him saying he had been “caught in the crossfire” and had been advised to take time out  “for self and family care”, which had prompted his decision to take leave.He further noted his trust in the competence and excellence of the Adapt IT management team made.

Media reports over the weekend alleged that Shabalala hired armed men to assault Sipho Nzuza, the partner of his estranged wife Neo.

Company suitors

Adapt IT is currently considering two takeover options, with shareholders reported to be backing an offer from Canadian firm Volaris over an unsolicited bid by local Huge Group. The deadlines for conditions to be met ahead of the proposed takeover have also been extended to 14 May 2021.

Huge Group is offering R5.52 a share to Adapt IT shareholders, in Huge shares. Volaris has tabled an all-cash offer at R6.50 per share, and is reported to have Shabalala’s backing.

Both acquisition offers value the software solutions provider at nearly R1 billion, almost on par with its value on the JSE.
Adapt IT clients cover a range of industries including hospitality, manufacturing, education, financial services, communications and sectors.