Michael Boult will step down as president and CEO of StarCite on Mar. 18, the meetings management technology company announced today.
StarCite COO Keith Forshew will lead the company until a permanent replacement is named, which Boult said should occur within two to three months. Boult is moving out of the travel industry to online wine retailer WineAccess as CEO, but will stay with StarCite as an independent board member. Company founder John Pino, who left his executive position with StarCite last month, also will stay on the board of the company, Boult said.
Boult said that StarCite's new CEO will take the reins of a growing company that in the future could well go public or be sold to another entity. "Neither one is planned at this moment in time, but thinking ahead, that's what you need to prepare the company for," he said.
The company is looking externally to fill the position and should wrap up the search in 60 to 90 days, Boult said.
"We have been for several months looking for someone to take over the reins from me," he said. "We've already identified some very strong candidates. We are looking at external candidates, and with any luck, there's absolutely the right person with the right blend of leadership skills, someone that's worked in larger, public companies that understands that environment, someone that's led high-growth technology business."
Boult said he had achieved what he wanted to accomplish with his time at StarCite.
"I signed on originally three years ago for three years. I said to the board of directors at that time that I needed three years to get the company to where they wanted. I had a goal in mind and the board brought me in to achieve the results of that goal, and it's been done," he said, adding that the goals centered around the "growth of the company to a certain financial point, a certain level of profit and a certain level of size."
Boult, named one of Business Travel News'
25 Most Influential Executives in the Business Travel Industry in 2006
, took over as president and COO in 2005 from founder John Pino (BTNonline, June 6, 2005)
. He was later promoted to CEO.
Through his tenure, Boult oversaw StarCite's growth in the industry, including its 2006 merger with fellow meeting technology company OnVantage (Meetings Today, Aug. 9, 2006)
. More recently, StarCite has furthered its reach by partnering with American Express to upload card data directly into StarCite's platform (Meetings Today, Sept. 10, 2007)
and launching a benchmarking initiative (Meetings Today, July 23, 2007)