General Electric Co. said longtime leader Jeff Immelt will step aside as chief executive on August 1, ending a 16-year run atop the conglomerate that he reshaped after the financial crisis but has struggled recently to boost profit.
Immelt, who has helmed the company since 2001 and oversaw the relocation of its headquarters from CT to Boston, will be replaced by John Flannery, the current President and CEO of GE Healthcare.
General Electric Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Immelt (C), Senior Vice President for Corporate Business Development John Flannery and Clara Gaymard (L), the head of GE France, leave after a meeting with French President.
Flannery, 55, who is now president and CEO of GE Healthcare, joined GE Capital about three decades ago.
Under his most recent title, Flannery led GE’s healthcare division to a 5-percent rise in organic revenue and 1-percent margins peak in 2016.
GE’s stock closed at $28.94 a share on Monday, up over 3.5 percent. “He will be trusted by investors, our customers and the GE team”.
Now, with the planned departure of GE’s longtime chief executive officer, Jeff Immelt, the chance of a public clash soon is greatly diminished. That led to an unusual disclosure in March in which GE said it had, in conjunction with Trian, pledged to lower annual spending by $2 billion in the next two years and tie executive bonuses to the effort.
GE said Kieran Murphy, president and CEO of GE Healthcare Life Sciences, will replace Flannery. “He has broad experience across multiple businesses, cycles and geographies”.
Activist investor Nelson Peltz’s Trian Fund Management bought a stake in GE in October 2015, the largest single investment the firm had ever made, and now worth about $2 billion.
Flannery stated in a video broadcast on Facebook that he would “take a fresh look at the company” with a “sense of urgency”.
“During this time of dynamic global markets and relentless focus on technology and operational excellence, there is no better person to lead GE than John Flannery“, Jack Brennan, the company’s lead independent director, said in a news release.
Cramer acknowledged that some may consider it unfair to judge Immelt after he inherited GE from its legendary former CEO Jack Welch, who boosted the company’s value by 4,000 percent during his time there.
Immelt is credited with leading a successful transformation of GE into a simpler, stronger and more focused digital industrial portfolio aligned to key markets such as power, aviation, transportation, healthcare and oil & gas.