IBM announced Friday that Jim Whitehurst is out as president of the company after 14 months at the helm, detailing a major shake-up in its leadership team. Investors did not appear to take kindly to the news, as the tech giant’s stock took a hit registering the biggest percentage drop since January.
|IBM||INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS MACHINES CORP.||140.02||-6.82||-4.64%|
In a post on the company’s website, IBM Chairman and CEO Arvind Krishna heaped praise on Whitehurst for his role in overseeing a smooth integration with Red Hat – the open-sourced software firm IBM acquired in 2019 (and where Whitehurst served as CEO from 2008 until his promotion last year) – before explaining that Whitehurst had stepped down but will stay on as a senior advisor to the executive leadership team.
But that’s not the only change that is happening at the top of the company.
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Krishna went on to reveal that IBM Senior Vice President of Global Markets Bridget van Kralingen would also be leaving her role but remain on board for another year as senior vice president of special projects before her retirement. The CEO further listed four new senior vice presidents of various company divisions.
The news sparked a decline of IBM’s stock price on Friday. After opening at $146.95 per share, the tech titan saw its shares make a sharp downturn mid-morning that leveled out before closing at $140.03, a 4.45% drop for the day.