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Veris CEO stands down from surveying conglomerate

Adam Lamond. Picture: Simon Santi

The chief executive officer of arguably the largest surveying firm in Australia, Veris (formerly OTOC) has resigned. Simon Thomas unexpectedly stood down from the role of CEO from the publicly listed company last month. In his stead, Adam Lamond has assumed the lead under the new role of managing director.

Just three years ago, Lamond was the managing director of the business then known as OTOC. Since then, Simon Thomas has driven Veris away from the Western Australian resource market into a more diversified and national market. An aggressive spate of acquisitions over the past few years saw Veris grow rapidly into a national presence.

The notable list of surveying businesses acquired during this period included: Whelans, Elks Engineering Surveys, WKC Spatial, THG Resource Strategists, Whitsunday Surveys, Charles O’Neill Surveyors & Planners, Geo-Metric Surveying, Lawrence Group, Bosco Jonson, Linker Surveying and Lester Franks.

As these business operations’ are spread across Australia, Veris now operates in all states and territories of Australia to provide cadastral and spatial solutions to some of Australia’s largest infrastructure, property and resource companies.

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In assuming the lead role, Lamond will be responsible for continuing a group-wide strategic and operational review of Veris. According to the ASX announcement of the shuffle, the review’s main purpose is to identify cost and integration savings with a view to fast-track “national integration of the surveying business” and “develop a strong and dominant brand in the surveying and spatial sector in Australia.”

Thomas will remain in contact with the business during the period of transition.

Derek La Ferla, Chairman of Veris, said: “The Board wishes to thank and acknowledge Simon for his contribution to the Company.”

“Through his efforts, Veris has become a leading national surveying group with first class operations throughout Australia. We wish Simon every success in his future endeavours”.

Commenting on Thomas’ departure, Lamond said, “I suppose it was a little bit unexpected.”

“But now that the decision’s been made and I’m back in here, it’s good and [I’m] looking forward to the challenge.”

Lamond was behind OTOC’s backdoor-listing in 2011 through Emerson Stewart Group. Recent struggles on the ASX have been suggested as the reason behind the executive re-shuffle.

“It’s all well and good us just going and acquiring businesses,” Mr Lamond said. “The hard work is in the integration and the aligning of cultures and systems and brand.

“To be truly successful we now have to create a national business.”

Mr Lamond said the business will aim to thrive on population growth with Sydney and Melbourne expected to double in size within the next few decades.

Veris aims to complete the rebrand of the newly acquired businesses sometime in 2018.

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