Starcom MediaVest Group CEO Laura Desmond has resigned from the board of directors of Tremor Video, the company confirmed Friday. Tremor also said that Former Yahoo Executive Michael Barrett has been named to the board.
Desmond joined the board in January of 2012. Earlier this year she made headlines when Tremor went public and the company disclosed that she owned shares in the company and had been granted options to buy additional shares.
The disclosure sparked an industry debate about whether Desmond’s financial interest in the company posed a conflict, given that SMG clients spend millions with Tremor Video -- $18 million in 2012, according to Tremor IPO documents.
The IPO filing also reported that Desmond was granted options for 175,000 shares in January 2012. The options have an exercise price of $3.34 and vest over a period of four years, assuming continued board service. The document also disclosed that Desmond owned 58,000 Tremor shares prior to the offering, which she still holds according to sources.
Sources also said that per the option package, Desmond was about one-third vested at the time of her resignation from the board, which was effective Sept. 26. The remaining options are now off the table given her departure.
Tremor was trading at $9.32 Friday afternoon, about 7% below the $10 that the stock began trading at back in June.
A rep for SMG said the agency had no comment on Desmond’s resignation from the Tremor Board or related matters. But internal sources said the resignation had nothing to do with the pending Publicis Groupe-Omnicom merger.
Tremor president and CEO Bill Day stated, “We want to thank Laura for her participation on our board of directors. Laura’s deep expertise in global media, marketing and technology, leadership capabilities and business acumen has provided meaningful perspective and industry knowledge to our board.”
Sources said Desmond informed Tremor of her intention to leave the board in August, having given close to two years of service to the company. Her departure was timed to the end of the third quarter.
According to Tremor, Barrett is currently an Internet venture investor. Previously he served as Executive Vice President and Global Chief Revenue Officer of Yahoo. Prior to Yahoo, Barrett was at Google, where he led the integration efforts following Google’s acquisition of ad sales platform Admeld, which he previously ran as CEO. Earlier he held posts at Fox Interactive Media and at AOL.