Gaming and Leisure CFO Bill Clifford leaves post at short notice

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After about five years in the position
  • Accolades, praise and thanks for Clifford
  • Steven Snyder taking over in the interim
  • Search for a successor

(exechange) — Wyomissing, Pennsylvania, April 25, 2018 — Bill Clifford, finance chief of Gaming and Leisure, leaves the position. It is a change at short notice. As announced by Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. in a news release on Wednesday, April 25, 2018, William J. (Bill) Clifford leaves his post as Chief Financial Officer at the real estate investment trust company after about five years in the position, effective May 4, 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 12 months was 6.3 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Clifford leaves the company effective August 31, 2018.

Gaming and Leisure will undertake a search for a successor.

Clifford’s duties will be taken over in the interim by Steven T. Snyder, currently Senior Vice President of Corporate Development of Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc.

No reason given

In the announcement, Gaming and Leisure did not explicitly explain the reason for Clifford’s imminent move, leaving room for speculation.

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

Alarm signal

Generally speaking, it is often an alarm signal for investors when a CFO leaves the position at short notice and without a reasonable explanation.

“Retire”

Gaming and Leisure said: “William J. Clifford, Chief Financial Officer, will retire after 17 years with the Company and its predecessor, Penn National Gaming, Inc.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. since August 2017.

Chaired by Peter M. Carlino

Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. is chaired by Peter M. Carlino.

Carlino is Chairman of the Company’s Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer. Carlino joined the Company in connection with the Spin-Off on November 1, 2013.

In the position of CFO since 2013

William J. Clifford is Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer at Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. since February 2013.

Clifford has over 30 years of experience in the gaming industry.

He began his career with Penn National Gaming as Chief Financial Officer in October 2001.

Prior to joining Penn, Clifford served as the Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Finance with Sun International Resorts, Inc., Paradise Island, Bahamas from March 1997 to July 2001.

During Clifford’s career, he also held positions with Treasure Island Hotel and Casino, Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino, Dunes Hotel and Casino, Aladdin Hotel and Casino, and Las Vegas Hilton.

He began his career as an Agent in the Audit Division of the Nevada Gaming Control Board in Las Vegas and Reno.

Clifford’s retirement will be effective August 31, 2018 to provide time to identify his successor and ensure an orderly transition.

Clifford will continue in his current role as CFO until May 4, 2018, at which point he will become a senior advisor to the Company and Steven T. Snyder will assume the role of Chief Financial Officer on an interim basis.

Unexpected

As a general rule, when a top manager announces to step down with no permanent successor available, it’s a signal that the change was unplanned and too early.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Bill Clifford’s imminent 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 18.2018 ($).