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CallPlus issue put down to marriage

Published: 6:57AM Wednesday September 27, 2006 Source: Newstalk ZB/ASB Business

The stoush between CallPlus and its co-founder Annette Presley is being put down to a marriage break up.

CallPlus put out a release on Tuesday saying Presley, the face of the companies internet arm Slingshot, was stepping aside. Confusion reigns over the announcement.

Presley is on holiday in Fiji and claims she is not quitting. But her estranged husband Malcolm Dick, who co-founded the company with her says she was aware of the decision.

But a defiant Presley denies that. She says that because she is the biggest shareholder, CallPlus chief executive Martin Wylie, who made the statement on her departure, is her employee. 

Presley says the announcement is one big mistake.

Business commentator Fran O'Sullivan says the battle is all about Presley and Dick's marriage break-up.

She says part of the trouble about going into business with your spouse is that if the marriage breaks up, it is very hard to stay in the same room as each other, let alone run a business.

Wylie admits the marriage split is the backdrop to the latest battle in the boardroom.

He has tried to clarify the situation, saying Annette Presley will no longer be fronting Slingshot, but says that is all that has happened and there has been no structural change.

Wylie says it was a board decision and the issue will be resolved with Presley when she returns from Fiji.