Jose Maria Irisarri Steps Down From Spain's Vertice 360

Irisarri wanted to include independent investment platform N+1 in Vertice 360, but met with resistance from Vertice's primary shareholder Ezentis.

MADRID - Jose Maria Irisarri announced his resignation as president of Spanish conglomerate Vertice 360 Group, citing the end of a five-year cycle since the launch of the film and television group.

Irisarri, known for his Midas touch, will present his resignation at a Jan. 18 board meeting, maintaining his role as a board member, but stepping down as president.

Under Irisarri's leadership, Vertice has become one of Spain's leading players by acquiring key companies in each sector: boutique TV producer Notro, mainstream comedy film producer Telespan and Spanish distributor Manga Films among others.

Vertice, which offers its own international sales branch in addition to its core business of production services, also launched an international expansion, opening offices in Miami, Los Angeles, Argentina, France, Belgium and Germany.

"Having achieved the majority of objectives outlined five years ago and having survived a period of extreme difficulty in the general economic environment and in the audiovisual sector in particular, the president had planned a project to give continuity to the group's development strategy in this new stage that included, among other things, financial reinforcement via the inclusion of new partners," Vertice said in a statement.

Spanish news reports said Irisarri had sought to include independent investment platform N+1 with a capital increase of €25 million ($32.3 million) in Vertice 360, but met with resistance from Vertice's primary shareholder Ezentis and its president Manuel Garcia-Duran.

"Given the clear discrepancies with some of the main shareholders and to avoid conflict that could threaten the company's interests, Jose Maria Irisarri will leave the presidency in an orderly manner to give way to a stage the administrative board should define with a new business and financing strategy that a top executive can implement," the statement said.

Vertice 360 Group earned $153 million in 2010, with the film and TV services representing 58 percent of sales.


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