Management Turnover as Change Agent

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Unisys Appoints New CEO and Chairman

Unisys, the struggling computer services and hardware firm, which recently pushed out its CEO (see blog) after increasing pressure from activist shareholder MMI Investments, today announced the selection of J. Edward Coleman as the firm's CEO and new Chairman.  Coleman, who Unisys has slated as a turnaround specialist, will take his position immediately. He has indicated he will be available at the firm's earnings call October 30th at which time he is expected to give his views on the firm.  

Unisys has sung the praises of Coleman for his efforts to turnaround Gateway Computer which he took over as CEO back in 2006.  Coleman was supposedly repsonsible for the sale of the firm to Acer, Inc. Upon the sale he left the firm.  Prior to his work with Gateway, he worked for Compu Com, Computer Sciences Corporation and IBM.  According to today's Wall Street Journal which quoted Unisys' press release,
... he "successfully restructured the company (Gateway) through a series of strategic initiatives and tightly focused the business on its core markets, culminating in its acquisition by Acer Inc.," 
I am not certain MMI Investments which holds over 9% of the company shares will be satisfied with the Coleman pick, we will just have to wait and see.  Coleman's task ahead is monumental, we will just have to watch his moves, his talent picks and his overall strategy to get a real sense of what he plans to do and whether he can succeed in his plans.

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