PulteGroup Founder On Recently-Fired CEO: Extreme Disappointment, Inadequate Performance
PulteGroup, Inc. (NYSE: PHM)'s founder, former Chairman and CEO, Bill Pulte, delivered a letter to the company's Board of Directions to reiterate his "extreme disappointment" in CEO Richard Dugas' performance.
The letter was delivered after the company announced Dugas has agreed to step down from the company. According to a letter delivered to shareholders, Dugas' decision to step down was due to to Pulte's demands for an "immediate CEO change and a different direction of the company."
Pulte cited three specific examples in highlighting Dugas' "inadequate performance":
- 1) The company's stock underperformance versus its peers since Dugas appointed as CEO almost 13 years ago
- 2) Laying off "key and irreplaceable" talent
- 3) Moving the company's headquarters at a cost of tens of millions of dollars with no apparent benefit to shareholders.
Bill Pulte acknowledged Dugas' resignation in his letter, but added the executive's departure "falls far short of the short-term leadership change that PulteGroup shareholders and PulteGroup employees need."
Pulte also noted the company decision not to nominate James Grosfeld to continue serving as a board member "reflects an attempt to stifle any differing views on management and business strategy matters, which is contrary to good corporate governance."
Pulte concluded in his letter that the board of directors should "significantly accelerate" the announced succession plan for Dugas and recruit an experienced and seasoned executive.
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