Avigilon VP Communications Exits

Author: Brian Karas, Published on Jun 27, 2017

In 2016, Avigilon hired an executive, Darren Seed to:

build and maintain strategic relationships with the investment community and to expand Avigilon's institutional shareholder base.

Now, he is gone.

Avigilon commented to IPVM on the departure of Seed. Inside, we examine that and what this means for the future of Avigilon.

Darren Seed Out

Though not reflected in his LinkedIn profile as of this report, Avigilon has confirmed that Darren Seed is no longer at the company. Like his predecessor, Dennis Fong, Seed's departure from the company has not been announced publicly. One of Seed's reports has also left Avigilon, according to sources.

No Plans To Fill Role

According to COO James Henderson, the company has no plans to fill the corporate communications role that Seed held in the short term. Instead, communications and investor relations questions will be handled by Avigilon CFO Ric Leong.

Streamlined Communications

For questions related to other areas of the company, Henderson stated that those inquiries will be handled directly by the CEO, CTO, etc. He stated that investors had expressed a desire to talk to department heads and executives directly, and that this new structure will streamline communications and give those seeking information more direct access.

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Backwards Shift

Seed's responsiveness certainly helped Avigilon, e.g., with responses to enquiries from IPVM he was generally prompt and direct. Leaving the communications role empty is uncommon for publicly traded companies, and a step backward for Avigilon in terms of providing a singular point of contact for external inquiries from investors and publications. While enabling investors/etc. to speak directly to executives is potentially positive on the surface, it can also be more burdensome and cumbersome to have executives directly interface with numerous investors and inquiries.

Continued Cost Cutting By Avigilon

One positive for keeping Seed's previous position/department vacant is cost-savings for the company. As Avigilon continues to focus on their bottom line, eliminating executive-level positions, and consolidating functions under existing employees, can help reduce overall spending, directly contributing to profitability and stock price.

Stock Swings Continue

In the past 12 months, overall, Avigilon's stock is moderately up but with sharp decline, sharp incline and recently modest downtrend:

Those moves were primarily driven by poor quarterly results (i.e., Avigilon Stock Plunges On Bad Financials (Q2 2016)) and strong quarterly results (i.e., Avigilon Stock Surges 40% On Strong Growth (Q3 2016).

Stock / Company Sale?

One much discussed topic, related to investors / investments, was the potential for Avigilon to be acquired. This grew with Avigilon setting up a poison pill in January 2016 and then further with many industry insiders citing ongoing negotiations / bidding for Avigilon at the beginning of 2017.

Not having an investment relationships leader is certainly uncommon for a publicly traded company but whether or not that signals a sale is imminent or not happening is unclear. Other sources separately indicate that recent negotiations for Avigilon have fallen through.

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