Glocer exits as Thomson Reuters appoints Smith to lead turnaround
02 December 2011 | 6708 views | 0
Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer is stepping down, replaced by chief operating officer James Smith, following a tough few months for the firm's markets division and a steady decline in its stock price.
Glocer, who became Reuters CEO in 2001 and kept hold of the top job following the Thomson merger in 2008, will step down at the end of the month and also retires as a director.
A former journalist, Smith takes over having only been named COO at the end of September after a stint as CEO of the Professional division, which has performed solidly in recent times, in contrast to the markets unit.
His appointment as COO was part of a wide-ranging restructuring of the company over the last few months as Thomson Reuters battled to improve results at a markets division that accounts for more than half of its revenues.
Its underperformance in the face of a tough financial climate, in part thanks to a lukewarm reception for the new Eikon desktop offering, has contributed to a 28% fall in the value of Thomson Reuters' stock since the start of the year.
Devin Wenig, CEO of global markets was ousted in July as part of a surprise shake-up of the business intended to improve sales to financial sector clients. This was followed in September by the break up of the gargantuan markets and professional divisions in favour of smaller and more focussed business units. As part of this, Smith was named COO, a new role created top push the "transition to a set of focused business units".
Smith takes charge of a company split into five units: Financial and Risk, led by president David Craig; Legal, president Mike Suchsland; Intellectual Property and Science, president, Chris Kibarian; Tax and Accounting, president Brian Peccarelli; and Global Growth Organization, president Shanker Ramamurthy.
Says Glocer: "By the end of this year, the organisational, strategy and budget work I have been leading will be complete, and the transition plan I launched last summer will have achieved its objectives. Jim Smith is a very talented executive with whom I have worked closely over the past four years; he is ready to lead Thomson Reuters."