Not long after celebrating the company's 21st anniversary at PLASA Shanghai, Celco's managing director, Keith Dale, and sales director Colin Whittaker have departed Celco Limited, the UK-based lighting console manufacturer and supplier.

Dale and Whittaker say the separation is a result of another change in the ownership of the company - one that they did not support. The new shareholders of Celco are Amptown of Germany, Applied Electronics of the US, and Sonoss of France, with Lightstorm Trading maintaining an equal interest with the new investors. Dale and Whittaker had been trying to strike a joint venture with a major British manufacturer.

Said Dale of his departure, "I don't think anyone will understand how difficult it is to part with something that has been a major factor in my life for so long. However, at least I can leave knowing that our strategic plan was in the best long-term interests of the company, its staff and customers. We wish everyone at Celco continued success and are excited at the prospect of applying our wealth of experience in new and different directions."

Whittaker, who joined Celco in 1988 following 10 years as sales director for Cerebrum Lighting, said, "It's regrettable that my involvement with Celco has come to an end, but it's been a privilege to have worked with such a great team over the years. We consider ourselves fortunate to have enjoyed such fantastic support from colleagues and dealers alike, many of whom have become good friends."

Dale and Whittaker say they intend to take a break before "evaluating their options in the industry," either jointly or individually.