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WhatsApp Co-Founder Brian Acton Appointed Interim CEO of Signal as Founder Steps Down

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Brian Acton, co-founder of Whatsapp, the popular instant messaging (IM) platform has been appointed as the interim Chief Executive Officer of Signal Messenger LLC, another encrypted IM service whose founder, Moxie Marlinspike steps down from.

Marlinspike in a statement said that Acton will serve as Signal’s interim chief as the company is still hunting for a permanent replacement.

According to the CEO, his goal has always been for the 7-year-old company to grow and sustain beyond his involvement as chief. Disclosing why he had not been able to step down before now, Marlinspoke noted that as of four years ago, he was still the one writing all of the Android and server code for the service and was the only person on call. He was also doing all of the product development and even had to keep his laptop handy at all times in the event of a service disruption.

From the company’s inception in 2014, it has recorded over 105 million downloads globally. Signal’s service which for users can optionally function as an SMS app, can be used to make one-to-one and group audio and video calls. Its users are also able to send one-to-one and group messages, which can include files, voice notes, images and videos.

The platform boasts of approximately 40 million monthly active users. Signal states that it has been installed in over 50 million Android devices.

Speaking on the growth of the service, Marlinspike revealed that Signal currently has 30 employees comprised of engineers, designers, support staff and a leadership team. The platform’s boss also mentioned that now, he rarely writes code now and no one person is ever perpetually on call.

Marlinspike expressed that he now feels comfortable replacing himself as CEO even though his company has been searching for a new head for months. In a tweet, he said, “It’s a new year! I’ve decided it’s a good time to replace myself as the CEO of Signal”.

Through the announcement of his resignation, Marlinspike said he hopes it will help find the best person to fill the CEO spot permanently. He will still remain on the Signal board and will transition out of the CEO role to help with the search for a permanent replacement.

The interim CEO, Brian Acton’s job takes effect this week. The new head of the service who volunteered for the role had worked with Apple, Yahoo and Adobe Systems before co-founding Whatsapp with Jan Koum in 2009 and Signal Foundation with Marlinspike in 2018.

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Appointments

UBA Appoints New Group Managing Director, Executive Board Members

United Bank for Africa appointed Oliver Alawuba to oversee the bank’s operations across 20 African countries, including the United Kingdom, the United States, France, and the United Arab Emirates.

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Oliver Alawuba - Investors King

United Bank for Africa, a leading financial institution in Nigeria, has appointed Oliver Alawuba as Group Managing Director to oversee the bank’s operations across 20 African countries, including the United Kingdom, the United States, France, and the United Arab Emirates.

The bank that was just licensed to operate in the United Arab Emirates disclosed in a press release signed by Bili A. Odum, Group Company Secretary.

Mr. Alawuba is expected to resume his new position on August 1, 2022, subject to approval by the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Oliver Alawuba joined UBA in 1997 and has held a series of senior positions, including as the CEO of UBA Ghana, the CEO of UBA, Africa and most recently, as Group Deputy Managing Director.

UBA Group Chairman, Tony Elumelu, stated ‘I am very pleased to announce Oliver Alawuba as the new Group Managing Director of the UBA Group. Oliver has extensive experience in Nigeria and our African network and is well equipped to advance our pan-African and global strategy.

I have no doubt that Oliver will build on the legacy of Kennedy Uzoka, who has exemplified transformational leadership by championing a customer-first philosophy; launching our twentieth operation in Africa, UBA Mali; acquiring a wholesale banking licence for UBA UK in the United Kingdom; and opening our fourth global operation, UBA Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates”.

Oliver Alawuba expressed his commitment to his new role as Group Managing Director saying “I am grateful for the opportunity to lead this great institution and would like to thank the UBA Group Chairman and the members of the Board of Directors for the confidence they have put in me to deliver the mandate.”

Other executive appointments are:

  • Ms. Sola Yomi-Ajayi, Executive Director, Treasury and International Banking. Sola has been with the Group since 2004 and has considerable international experience, culminating in her appointment as CEO of UBA America.
  • Mr. Ugochukwu Nwagodoh, Executive Director, Finance and Risk Management. Ugo joined the Group from PwC in October 2004. He has since held a series of significant roles in the areas of performance management, compliance, financial control and reporting.
  • Mr. Alex Alozie, Executive Director and Group Chief Operating Officer, who joined the Group in 2019 and has driven the Group’s digital transformation and operational efficiencies.
  • Ms. Emem Usoro, Executive Director, North Bank. Emem joined the Group in 2011 and has served in a series of senior regional appointments across Nigeria, covering the retail, corporate and public sectors.

The appointments as after the following executive directors retired: Mr. Kennedy Uzoka, Mr. Uche Ike, Mr. Chukwuma Nweke, Mr. Ibrahim Puri and Mr. Chiugo Ndubisi.

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Ellah Lakes Appoints Paul Farrer as Deputy Managing Director

Ellah Lakes Plc has appointed Mr. Paul Farrer as its new Deputy Managing Director to oversee the company’s operational growth and development.

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Ellah Lakes Plc has appointed Mr. Paul Farrer as its new Deputy Managing Director to oversee the company’s operational growth and development.

Ellah Lakes announced in a statement signed by Olumoroti Alli, a staff of OAKE Legal, ( the Company Secretary).

Prior to his appointment, Paul Farrer was the Country Manager for Innscor International, then the Group Executive Director & Chief Operating Officer of Food Concepts Plc.

His last Seven (7) Years in Nigerian Private Sector have been spent as the CEO of Nascon Allied Industries PLC, leading a team of over 600 staff. NASCON Allied Industries Plc. is also listed on Nigerian Exchange Limited.

Mr. Farrer will be responsible for the operational growth and development of the Company, and the expansion of the Ellah Lakes Staple Crop Processing Zones (SCPZ’s) strategy across Nigeria.

Commenting on the appointment, the Chief Executive Officer, Chuka Mordi said “We are very happy and excited about the extremely valuable addition of Paul to the team. He has a proven track record both internationally and in Nigeria”.

“We have set ambitious growth targets for Ellah Lakes Plc, and Paul Farrer possesses the wealth of experience required to develop companies in the challenging Nigerian environment. We are very glad to welcome him on board to strengthen the Ellah Lakes Executive team”.

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Industrial & Medical Gases Nigeria Appoints Aminu Ado as Acting Chairman

Following the demise of Mr. Abiodun Olabode Alabi, the Board of Directors of Industrial & Medical Gases Nigeria Plc has appointed Mr. Aminu Ado as the Acting Chairman.

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Following the demise of Mr. Abiodun Olabode Alabi, the Board of Directors of Industrial & Medical Gases Nigeria Plc has appointed Mr. Aminu Ado as the Acting Chairman.

This was stated in a statement signed by Aderonke Segun-Alabi (Mrs), Company Secretary.

Aminu Ado Profile

Mr. Aminu Ado holds a Master’s degree in Financial Management from the Robert Gordon University (RGU), Aberdeen, UK. He also has a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) (Executive) from the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Nigeria.

He is a fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), United Kingdom, a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) and the Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM).

Aminu is currently the Managing Director, TY Holdings Limited and was appointed a Non-Executive Director of IMG in January 2022.

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