Leslie Stern, Chief Executive Officer of Bell and Howell, based in Durham, North Carolina, is stepping down from her post for personal reasons.
Bell and Howell’s Board of Directors has appointed one of its members, Kamal Advani of controlling shareholder Versa Capital Management, to serve as Interim CEO until a permanent successor is found, a process targeted for conclusion by year-end. Advani has nearly 30 years of finance and operating experience in a variety of industries.
“I’m proud of what the team has accomplished to reestablish the Bell and Howell brand and its reputation for innovative products,” stated Stern. “Thanks to our loyal customers, our dedicated workforce, and our industry leading solutions, we are well positioned for continued growth, so after two years of commuting to Durham from my home in New York, I need to spend more time with my family.”
Bell and Howell was founded in 1907 by two projectionists, who initially focused on the development of motion-picture equipment. Eventually the company moved into producing document processing equipment and in 2003 merged with Böwe Systec Inc. It was known as Böwe Bell & Howell until 2011, when Versa Capital Management bought the company and returned it to its original name.
“The company has made substantial progress since our 2011 acquisition in large measure due to Les’s efforts working with the management team and all Bell and Howell employees worldwide,” stated Gregory Segall, Chairman of Bell and Howell and CEO of Versa Capital.