Bojangles’ CEO Clifton Rutledge leaves abruptly

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After about four years in the position
  • Praise, thanks and good wishes for Rutledge
  • Randy Kibler taking over in the interim
  • Search for a successor
  • Rutledge spoke at length and said 93 words

(exechange) — Charlotte, North Carolina, March 5, 2018 — Clifton Rutledge, chief executive of Bojangles’, leaves. It is an abrupt change. As announced by Bojangles’, Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Monday, March 5, 2018, Clifton Rutledge leaves his post as Chief Executive Officer at the fast food restaurant company after about four years in the position, effective immediately.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CEOs who departed over the past 12 months was 9.2 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Bojangles’ will undertake a search for a successor.

Rutledge’s duties will be taken over in the interim by James R. (Randy) Kibler, a former Chief Executive Officer of Bojangles’ Restaurants, Inc., the Company’s subsidiary.

Already a director

Kibler is already a director of Bojangles’.

“Personal reasons”

Rutledge’s sudden departure from the CEO post is explained as follows. Bojangles’ said: “the Board of Directors has appointed James “Randy” Kibler as Interim President and CEO following the resignation of Clifton Rutledge for personal reasons.”

In the announcement, the company did not detail the personal reasons causing Rutledge to leave the position, leaving room for speculation. Generally speaking, “personal reasons” may include, among others, family-related reasons, health reasons or disagreement.

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

Wake-up call

Generally speaking, it is often an alarm signal for stockholders when a CEO leaves the post abruptly and without a reasonable explanation.

“Stepped down”

Bojangles’ said: “Mr. Rutledge has stepped down as a member of the Company’s Board effective immediately.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Bojangles’, Inc. since May 2017.

Chaired by William Kussell

Bojangles’, Inc. is chaired by William Kussell.

William A. Kussell has served as non-executive chairman since June 2016 and as a director of the Company and as an advisor to the Company since August 2011.

In the position of CEO since 2014

Clifton Rutledge has been the Chief Executive Officer of Bojangles’, Inc. since January 24, 2014 and has been its President since February 2014.

Clifton Rutledge has served as chief executive officer of Bojangles’ Restaurants, Inc. since January 2014 and as a director, president and chief executive officer of the Company and of Bojangles’ Restaurants, Inc. since February 2014.

From August 2011 to January 2014, Rutledge served as chief operations officer and senior vice president of Whataburger Restaurants, LLC, a quick-service restaurant company based in San Antonio, Texas (“Whataburger”).

Rutledge served as vice president of operations and training of Whataburger from July 2008 to September 2011, as group vice president of operations of Whataburger from January 2006 to June 2008 and as group director of franchisee operations of Whataburger from 2003 to 2006.

Prior to that, Rutledge worked for KFC, a quick-service restaurant company, and TCBY, a manufacturer and retailer of dairy products including frozen yogurt and ice cream, in operational positions.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Clifton Rutledge’s sudden 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 11.2018 ($).