Andrew Liveris, DowDuPont CEO, steps down

Andrew Liveris, DowDupont CEO, has given up and will leave after 14 years as head of the US-based chemicals giant DowDuPont. Liveris will leave after years of pressure by the shareholder Third Point, an edge fund that had referred to him as the worst CEO ever. Liveris has resisted pressures and now leaves spontaneously after setting the strategy of his group, which has originated from the DuPont-Dow merger.  Jim Fitterling, currently head of the plastic division and working for Dow for 34 years, will be the group’s new CEO. The group has radically changed during the Liveris era, especially through divestitures and acquisitions. Specifically, two highly significant moves have been  the divestiture of Chlorine–a historical arm of the group’s–and the $15bn acquisition of competitor Rohm & Haas (2008), performed at the beginning of the financial crisis, therefore jeopardizing the group’s financial stability–DowDuPont was forced to cut dividends. Everyone gives Liveris credit for transforming Dow, initially a group focused on basic chemical industry–large output with low margins–into a specialty chemicals giant, with an EBITDA of approximately 13% (2017).

(Source: ChemWeek)