Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke leaves abruptly


  • Push-out Score determined
  • After about five years in the position
  • Thanks for Clarke
  • Jim Continenza taking over
  • Clarke said 75 words

(exechange) — Rochester, New York, February 20, 2019 — Jeff Clarke, chief executive of Kodak, leaves — as “mutually agreed.” It is an abrupt change. As announced by Eastman Kodak Co. in a news release on Wednesday, February 20, 2019, Jeffrey J. (Jeff) Clarke leaves his post as Chief Executive Officer at the technology company focused on imaging after about five years in the role, 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 8.2 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Jeff Clarke’s duties will be taken over by James V. (Jim) Continenza, most recently Chairman of Eastman Kodak Company, as Executive Chairman.

“Deleverage our balance sheet, increase operational efficiencies, and maximize the potential of our key growth drivers”

A reason for Jeff Clarke’s sudden departure from the CEO post was not explicitly provided. Continenza said: “Importantly, I look forward to helping Kodak build long-term value for shareholders as we continue to deleverage our balance sheet, increase operational efficiencies, and maximize the potential of our key growth drivers.”

Precise information regarding Jeff Clarke’s future plans was not immediately available.

“Stepping down”

Kodak said that Jeffrey J. Clarke “is stepping down after nearly five years as Chief Executive Officer.”

Share price decline

The announcement follows a decline in Eastman Kodak Company’s share price of 89 percent since March 2014.

In the position of CEO since 2014

Jeffrey J. Clarke has been the Company’s Chief Executive Officer.

Prior to joining the Company in March 2014, Clarke was a Managing Partner of Augusta Columbia Capital, a private investment firm he co-founded in 2012.

From 2012 to 2014, Clarke was the Chairman of Travelport, Inc., a private travel technology firm, where he served as Chief Executive Officer from 2006 to 2011, after leading its sale from Cendant Corporation to The Blackstone Group L.P. for $4.3 billion in 2006.

Clarke was the Chief Operating Officer of CA, Inc. (now called CA Technologies), an enterprise software company, from 2004 to 2006.

At CA, he was responsible for sales, services, distribution, corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, information technology, corporate strategy and planning.

From 2002 to 2003, Clarke was Executive Vice President of Global Operations at Hewlett-Packard (HP).

In this role, he was responsible for HP’s worldwide supply chain, manufacturing, procurement and internet operations.

He also co-led HP’s merger integration with Compaq Computer.

Prior to HP, Clarke was the Chief Financial Officer of Compaq Computer, which he joined in 1998 following the merger of Compaq with Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).

Clarke was with DEC from 1985 to 1998, serving in management roles in international operations, finance and manufacturing.

In November 2017, Clarke joined the board of directors of Docker Inc., a leading software company for building, securing and managing applications on a global container platform.

Clarke served on the board of directors of Autodesk, Inc., a 3D design, engineering and entertainment software company, from March 2016 through June 2017 and on the board of directors of Red Hat, Inc., an enterprise software company, from November 2008 through July 2016.

He served as Chairman of Orbitz Worldwide, Inc., a global online travel agency, after leading the company’s IPO in July 2007, until April 2014, and was also a director of the Compuware Corporation, an enterprise software company, from November 2013 until December 2014.

Clarke served on the board of directors of UTStarcom, which designs and manufactures communications equipment, from 2005 to 2010.

Clarke serves as a Trustee of Northeastern University.

Clarke will be available to Continenza and the Board to ensure a smooth transition.

Clarke’s seat on the Board will be filled by Phillippe D. Katz, newly appointed Director of Kodak.

Katz has served as Partner at the investment firm of United Equities Commodities Company since 1996.

He also sits on the Board of Directors of Berkshire Bancorp, Inc. and several private company boards.

Push-out Score determined

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange gauges the likelihood that a manager was pushed out or felt pressure to leave the position.

exechange reached out to Kodak and offered the company the opportunity to comment on the score.

Read the full story in the exechange report 8.2019 ($).