Bob Aiken has resigned as president and CEO of Essendant Inc. (NASDAQ: ESND), Deerfield, IL, to "pursue an opportunity outside the company," the distributor announced.
Ric Phillips, group president of Essendant's industrial division, has been appointed interim president and CEO, effective immediately. Essendant's board has formed a search committee and retained a search firm to select a permanent CEO.
When Phipps resigned, Aiken succeeded him first as interim president and CEO and then as the permanent replacement in July 2015. MDM interviewed Aiken earlier this year about the master distributor's efforts to refocus its brand positioning and enter the foodservice sector in Essendant’s Path Takes New Twist.