Sabre CFO Rick Simonson leaves

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After about five years in the position
  • Accolades, praise and thanks for Simonson
  • Search for a successor
  • Simonson spoke at length and said 93 words

(exechange) — Southlake, Texas, January 11, 2018 — Rick Simonson, finance chief of Sabre, leaves. As announced by Sabre Corporation in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Thursday, January 11, 2018, Richard A. (Rick) Simonson leaves his post as Chief Financial Officer at the travel technology company after about five years in the position, effective by the end of 2018.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CFOs who departed over the past twelve months was 5.8 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Simonson’s move comes twelve months after Sean Menke took over as CEO of Sabre Corporation.

Sabre will undertake a search for a successor.

“With the full leadership team in place, the timing is right to transition to the next CFO of Sabre”

Simonson’s departure from the CFO post is explained as follows. Simonson said: “With the full leadership team in place, the timing is right to transition to the next CFO of Sabre as we execute on Sabre’s focused strategy to lead the travel technology industry and deliver long-term value through prioritized, strategic investment.”

Precise information about Simonson’s future plans was not immediately available.


Sabre said: “Chief Financial Officer Rick Simonson, 59, has notified Sabre of his intention to retire from his role as CFO of Sabre by the end of 2018.”

Sabre further said: “Richard A. Simonson intends to retire from his position as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Sabre by the end of 2018.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Sabre Corporation since July 2016.

Chaired by Lawrence Kellner

Sabre Corporation is chaired by Lawrence Kellner.

Kellner has served as president of Emerald Creek Group, a private equity firm that he founded, since 2010. He has served as Sabre’s chairman of the board from 2013 to 2016 and since December 31, 2017.

CEO: Sean Menke

Sean Menke serves as CEO of Sabre Corporation. Menke has served on the Company’s board of directors since December 2016. Before being named CEO in December 2016, Menke served as executive vice president, Sabre and president of Sabre Travel Network since October 2015.

In the position of CFO since 2013

Richard A. Simonson has been the Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President at Sabre Holdings Corporation and Sabre GLBL Inc. since March 19, 2013.

As executive vice president (EVP) and chief financial officer (CFO) for Sabre, Rick Simonson leads the company’s global finance organization and is responsible for all finance and controls, reporting, investor relations and corporate development activities.

Before joining Sabre in March 2013, Simonson most recently served as CFO and president for business operations at Rearden Commerce, an e-commerce company. ^

Prior to that he spent nearly a decade with Nokia Corporation in several global roles based in locations around the world – in Helsinki, Zurich and New York – including EVP and general manager of Nokia’s mobile phones unit and more than five years as EVP and CFO.

Simonson’s career includes time with Barclays Capital as managing director in the telecom and media investment banking group.

He also spent 16 years with Bank of America Securities, where he held various finance and investment banking positions in San Francisco and Chicago.

Simonson currently serves on the boards of Electronic Arts, where he chairs the nominating and governance committee, and Silver Spring Networks, where he chairs the audit committee.

He holds an M.B.A. from Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania and a B.S. degree from the Colorado School of Mines.

To help ensure an orderly transition, Simonson will step down from his current position once a successor is appointed, but will remain with Sabre as a Senior Advisor.

After his successor is appointed, Simonson will remain with Sabre as Senior Advisor of Sabre until June 30, 2019.


As a general rule, when a top leader announces to step down with no successor in place, it is a sign that the change was unexpected and too early.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Rick Simonson’s move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange suggests that push-out forces may have contributed to the change.

Read the full story in the exechange report 3.2018 ($).