Michael Higgins has stepped down as chief executive of outdoor
start-up Van Wagner following the US firm’s decision to ditch its
acquisition and expansion plans.
Higgins, the ex-More Group chief executive who was brought in to run the
UK office in September, will remain at the helm of Van Wagner, but as a
Higgins had spoken of buying a big operator such as Maiden Outdoor or
venturing into billboards or ambient media.
However, the New York-based company now wants to focus solely on
developing the core business of one-off eye-catching sites in central
’The job’s not big enough for me,’ said Higgins, who added that he had a
few of his own business ideas in mind.
At the same time Higgins will continue to handle sales for Van
He insisted he was ’committed’ to the role and that it was ’full steam
ahead’ for the UK office.
Higgins and his two members of staff; outdoor development director Alex
Brown, who joined from Maiden Outdoor, and former Mills & Allen general
manager Brian Coleman, have already secured two sites.They are a
96-sheet on West London’s Hogarth roundabout and a drape on the
Van Wagner has no sales staff but Higgins may look at hiring a small
team when the company expands.
He said Van Wagner’s change of heart was nothing to do with a lack of
funds. ’The cash is there but it’s their money and Van Wagner wants to
invest it in a way that they are comfortable with.’
He commented on his change of title: ’There’s no need to have a
full-time chief executive as the job is not as big as it was. Alex and
Brian are still here and there has been more involvement from the States
but externally there will be no change, I’ll still look after sales.’