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Executives on the move: New leadership enters the mix as Conduent, Kraft Heinz, and Uber face serious challenges

Sharon Gillenwater

UberWe’re back with the next installment of our new feature, Executives on the Move. This week, we’re highlighting big changes at a series of companies that are facing serious financial challenges, from Conduent and Kraft Heinz to ride-share giant Uber.

Here are the executives making moves. 

No new CEO on the horizon for Conduent Inc.
Conduent Inc., the world’s largest provider of diversified business process services, spun off from Xerox back in 2017 as its own publicly traded company. Until this month, Ashok Vemuri served as its CEO. But Conduent has been struggling: The company reported a second-quarter net loss of $1.03 billion, according to MarketWatch. Revenue fell to $1.11 billion from $1.39 billion a year ago, and overall, Conduent’s stock has fallen 76% this year. Clifford Skelton, the former president and COO at Conduent, was named interim CEO in the wake of Vemuri’s departure, but the company recently announced it has stopped its search for a permanent CEO — news that caused shares to tumble another 5%. In addition to its financial troubles, Conduent has also struggled with office culture and employee morale. According to a report from Glassdoor, the company received scathing reviews, with employees likening the culture to a “call-center environment.” Just 32% said they would recommend a job at Conduent to a friend.

A global restructuring underway at Kraft Heinz
Kraft and Heinz merged back in 2015 to create the world’s fifth largest food and beverage company and spur more growth, both domestically and abroad. But the company has struggled in the wake of the merger and is currently in the midst of a massive restructuring that has already claimed 1,400 jobs and is on track to eliminate 400 more. Part of that restructuring has brought a change of command: CEO Bernardo Hees stepped down earlier this summer, and Miguel Patricio, the former global chief marketing officer of Anheuser-Busch InBev, stepped in. Eduardo Luz left his role as global brand officer and chief marketing officer at Kraft Heinz to become CEO of 8Greens. Paulo Basilio took the role of chief business planning and development officer at Kraft Heinz, and Rafa Oliveira is now the company’s international zone president. Together, they’ve got a tough road ahead. Kraft Heinz’s stock has fallen 64% since 2018, and analysts don’t see an end in sight.

Troubles continue at Uber
Zhenya Lindgardt has joined Uber as VP of customer engagement and business strategy at a critical time for the company. The ride-share giant has long struggled with public relations — including when a massive movement took hold to encourage users to #DeleteUber (and hundreds of thousands did). And its financial performance has been less than stellar. Shares of Uber hit their lowest point ever after the company reported a $5.2 billion loss in its latest quarterly earnings report, and the company has yet to turn a profit. The company recently laid off about 400 marketing employees and froze hiring in other parts of the business. It’s also scaling back its use of balloons to celebrate employee anniversaries — a cost that totaled $200,000 a year. Analysts are now questioning Uber’s prospects for profitability, as the company continues its efforts to become the “Amazon of transportation.” 

The scooter invasion is about to get bigger
If you live in a decent-sized city, you’ve likely been inundated by motorized scooters. It’s a new take on public transportation that is seeing explosive growth — and some serious interest from investors. Lime, for one, is currently valued at $2.4 billion, after raising hundreds of millions in venture capital funding. Now, the company is expected to hit the fundraising circuit yet again, this time in pursuit of $500 million. Another sign of growth? The company hired its first-ever CMO this year: Scott Stump, the former executive vice president for community and brand at lululemon athletica — in case the scooter movement didn’t already have enough momentum.

More executives making moves…

  • Phyllis Anderson has left her role as SVP and CMO, Express Scripts Holding Company.
  • Nathan Bell is now chief digital officer, M1 Limited.
  • Anthony Cochrane is now Chief Commercial Officer, New Venture Group and Executive Chairman, M&A and Transaction Solutions, Aon, plc.
  • Jonathan Craig is now senior EVP, Investor Services and Marketing, Charles Schwab Corporation.
  • Jim Cullen retired from his role as VP, Business Technology Strategy and Planning, Pfizer, Inc.
  • Neill Feather is now chief innovation officer, Sitelock.
  • David Hatfield has stepped down as chairman and CEO, Edgewell Personal Care.
  • Thomas Heiser is now chairman and CEO, Sitelock.
  • Steve Johnston is now acting CEO, Suncorp Group.
  • Robert Lord is now SVP, Cognitive Applications, IBM Corporation.
  • Jim Nicholas is now CEO, Uniphy Ltd.
  • Patrick O’Hare retired as SVP of facilities and CIO, Spectrum Health.
  • Timothy Otton is now director, Hybrid Cloud Services, Westpac Banking Corporation.
  • Connie Pilot is now Principal Security Advisor, Amazon Web Services, Inc., Amazon.com, Inc.
  • James Powell has stepped down as CIO and CTO, Engineering at Digital Asset Holdings, LLC.
  • Bertram Reese is now acting CIO, Inova Health System.
  • Michael Riad is now head of transformation and digitization, Vocus Group Limited.
  • Patrick Sim has left his role as VP and CIO, West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc.
  • Eric Slusser is now CFO of Mallinckrodt Specialty Generics, Mallinckrodt LLC.
  • Scott Wibirt is now Global Information Security Solution Architect, Costco Wholesale Corporation
Each executive featured here has an in-depth profile available for download on the Boardroom Insiders platform. Not a customer? Click here to learn more.

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Sharon Gillenwater
Written by Sharon Gillenwater
Sharon Gillenwater is the founder and editor-in-chief of Boardroom Insiders, which maintains an extensive database of the most in-depth executive profiles on the market, from Fortune 500 companies to independent non-profits, to help sales and marketing professionals build deeper relationships and close more deals with clients. Gillenwater is a long-time marketing consultant with expertise in marketing strategy, account-based marketing, and CXO engagement programs.
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