Adient Announces Leadership Transition PlanAdient Announces Leadership Transition Plan - aftermarketNews

Adient Announces Leadership Transition Plan

Adient’s board of directors has appointed Frederick Henderson as interim CEO and John Barth, Adient's current lead director, as interim chairman of the company’s board.

Adient plc, a global leader in automotive seating, has announced its board of directors has appointed Frederick Henderson as interim CEO and John Barth, as Adient’s current lead director, as interim chairman of Adient’s board.

Henderson was most recently CEO of SunCoke and, prior to that, served as president and CEO of General Motors. He has 26 years of automotive experience, including direct involvement in China and Asia Pacific and 20 years of general management and operating experience, eight of which were as a CEO. He has served on the Adient board since the company was established as a public entity in 2016. Henderson will remain a board member but will relinquish his position on the governance committee.

Henderson succeeds R. Bruce McDonald, who is stepping down from his role as chairman and CEO effective immediately, and will remain as an adviser to the CEO until Sept. 30.

The Adient board of directors has commenced a comprehensive search process to identify a new CEO. That process will be coordinated on behalf of the board by directors Barb Samardzich, Peter Carlin and Raymond Conner.

“Bruce McDonald made significant contributions during the formation of Adient plc to ensure a successful spin-off,” said Barth. “Bruce and the board agree that now is the right time for a new leader with a fresh perspective to drive value in the next phase of Adient’s life as a public company. Fritz brings the right leadership skills and operational experience to step in and immediately accelerate our transformation, providing the time to conduct an expeditious and thoughtful search for a new CEO.”

Henderson said, “While our market position remains strong and our China joint ventures continue to perform at high levels, we recognize that we are not executing at the levels we are capable of in our consolidated Seat Structures and Mechanisms and Seating segments, and that shortfall has been reflected in our financial results and valuation. My immediate focus is on better operational execution to drive meaningful improvements in profitability and free cash flow. We know what needs to be done and we will be approaching the work ahead of us with urgency.”

McDonald has served as the company’s chairman and CEO since its separation from Johnson Controls in 2016.

Revised Outlook for Full Year 2018

Today, Adient also announced it is revising its outlook for the full fiscal year 2018. Despite an anticipated increase in fiscal year 2018 revenue to approximately $17.5 billion, operating performance is running behind plan and thus the company’s outlook for Adjusted EBITDA is now expected to be approximately $1.25 billion.

Continued challenges impacting the Seat Structures & Mechanisms segment drove approximately half of the shortfall versus previous expectations while weakness in the company’s Seating segment and Interiors drove the remainder, the company said. The primary drivers impacting Seating related to lower than expected operational conversion, primarily in North America, and to a lesser extent, economics and the negative impact of foreign exchange.

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