ARTS Loses Second Chief

Ermias resigned on February 16, 2017, after a disagreement with the Board

Ermias Eshetu, who recently moved to ARTS Media S.C- broadcaster of African Renaissance Television Services (ARTS) as a CEO with a hefty salary, has resigned from his post following a disagreement with the Board of the Company.

Ermias resigned on February 16, 2017, when he showed up to ARTS headquarters and studio located on Cameroon St. in front of Bole Medihanialem Cathedral, for the last time. Following his resignation the board assigned Mekedes Abera, the marketing manager of the Company, to act as a CEO.

The Board brought him onboard on December 1st, 2017, with a monthly salary of 200,000 Br replacing the founding CEO Mackonen E. Michael, who resigned after serving the Company for 17 months in the same position.

Prior to joining ARTS, Ermais was CEO at the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX) until he resigned last September and his official contract was terminated as of November 30, 2017. After his departure, the ECX assigned Wondimagegnehu Negera, former president of the Cooperative Bank of Oromia (CBO) as its CEO two months ago.

Ermias was in charge of ARTS for only two and half months. He got into a disagreement with the Company’s Board. It has 25 shareholders with professional backgrounds in media, education, finance, law, medicine, to name a few. The broadcasting company was endowed by Amare Aregawi, founder of Media & Communications Centre (MCC), publishers of Reporter and The Reporter, along with Haile Gebrselassie, Olympic gold-medalist, Gebregzibher Gebremariam, an athlete, Zemedeneh Negatu, an accountant and Zewdineh Beyene (PhD), a lawyer.

After joining ARTS, Ermias, who was vice president at Zemen Bank and served global IT companies, including IBM Orange, MicroStrategy and Alcatel, wanted to reform it by sacking the existing senior managers but failed to do that following the Board’s interference, according to sources close to the case.

Apart from Ermias, many employees have resigned from ARTS during the past three months, including Mackonen and other employees from the production department. Mackonen, a returnee from the UK has moved to Nahoo television, another local broadcaster, with the same post, after the founding shareholder of ARTS Tewdoros Shiferaw, moved to Nahoo acquiring majority share at the Company.

ARTS is one of the nine TV stations operating in Ethiopia, of which eight are privately owned and satellite-based. It plans to start broadcasting before the end of next month as it has applied for a domestic transmission licence from the Ethiopian Broadcasting Authority (EBA), which is pending. It has a plan to start broadcasting from Washington DC, Chicago, San Francisco, and Addis Abeba, Ethiopia.

Our repeated attempts to meet Ermias and board members of ARTS bore no fruit.


Published on Feb 26,2018 [ Vol 18 ,No 931]



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