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Grass Roots departures part of new owner's "continued evaluation"

Giselle Ripken and David Battley to leave Grass Roots M&E two months after acquisition from US-based Blackhawk Network

Pictured: Giselle Ripken, executive director at Grass Roots Meetings & Events, is set to leave after 30 years

Grass Roots' new owner Blackhawk Network says it is continuing to evaluate all of its businesses, after it was revealed two leading figures from its newly-acquired meetings and events company are set to leave.

Giselle Ripken, executive director, and David Battley, account director, are understood to be departing Grass Roots Meetings & Events in line with a restructure, two months after the company was acquired by the US-based company.

Ripken leaves after 30 years' with the agency while Battley joined from BI Worldwide two years ago.

Blackhawk Network chief marketing officer Teri Llach said: "We continue to evaluate all of our businesses to ensure that they are optimally aligned. However, as a public company, we are unable to comment on workforce reduction or restructuring or future plans.”

It follows a year of significant change for the respected agency; after the £90 million buy-out of its parent company Grass Roots Group, it has since re-focused to move away from one-off, small events as part of a five-year plan. Former sales director David Taylor also took over as MD in January, replacing Des Mclaughlin.

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