- After about four and a half years in the position
- Praise and thanks for Smythe
- Adam Taich taking over temporarily
(exechange) — Boulder, Colorado, March 28, 2023 — Roy Smythe, chief executive of SomaLogic, leaves his position. As announced by SomaLogic Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Tuesday, March 28, 2023, Roy Smythe leaves his post as chief executive officer at the specialist in proteomics technology, after about four and a half years in the role, effective immediately.
The average tenure of CEOs who announced their departure over the past 12 months was 8.1 years. This is according to data collected by CEO-exit research firm exechange.
exechange tracks CEO departures at the 3,000 largest publicly traded companies in the U.S., examines the reasons CEOs leave and determines the Push‑out Score™, a measure of pressure on departing chief executives on a scale of 0 to 10.
Roy Smythe’s duties as CEO will be taken over temporarily by Adam Taich, most recently Executive Vice President of Life Sciences at SomaLogic Inc., as Interim Chief Executive Officer.
“To pursue other opportunities”
Roy Smythe’s departure from the CEO post is explained as follows. SomaLogic stated: “On March 28, 2023, the Company and Dr. Roy Smythe, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board, announced that Dr. Smythe will be resigning as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the Board, effective as of the Effective Time, to pursue other opportunities.”
The top three reasons cited in corporate announcements for CEO departures over the past 12 months are performance issues (27.8% of cases), implementation of a planned succession (16.6%) and the statement that the time was right for a change (10%), according to exechange data. Other motives given for leadership changes included the outgoing CEO’s wish to pursue other opportunities (5.6% of cases), personal reasons (3.8%) and conduct issues (2.2%). Rather rarely stated reasons are health problems (1.6% of cases), disagreement (1.3%), death (1.3%), the desire for more time with family (0.9%) and career change (0.6%). Sometimes, more than one reason was given. In 28.4% of cases, no reason was given.
Precise information regarding Roy Smythe’s future plans was not immediately available.
SomaLogic said: “Roy Smythe, M.D, has stepped down from his role as Chief Executive Officer and board member, also effective today.”
Generally, resignations are seen as formally voluntary departures. Still, CEOs may also be pressured to resign. In fact, 82% of the time “resign” was used in CEO departure announcements over the past 12 months, the departing chief executives received Push-out Scores above the critical threshold of 5, indicating elevated pressure.
Share price decline since March 2022
The announcement follows a decline in SomaLogic Inc.’s share price of 74% since March 2022.
In the position of CEO since 2018
Roy Smythe became CEO of the Company in 2018.
Roy Smythe served as Old SomaLogic’s Chief Executive Officer and director since November 2018, and served as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and director following the consummation of the Business Combination.
Smythe came to Old SomaLogic from Royal Philips, where he served as Global Chief Medical Officer for Strategy and Partnerships.
Before joining Philips, he served as Chief Medical Officer at Valence Health, a Chicago-based healthcare company.
He held the same title previously at AVIA, a healthcare technology accelerator.
While in medical school at Texas A&M, he was a Charles A. Dana Foundation Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and the Wharton School of Business.
Following medical school, he trained in general surgery, surgical oncology and thoracic surgery and completed a postdoctoral research fellowship in molecular therapeutics at the University of Pennsylvania.
His medical and translational research career then began at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, where he was the recipient of NIH and numerous other funding awards.
He subsequently chaired the Department of Surgery at Baylor Scott & White Health System and the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, where he was the Roney Endowed Chair, and later became the Medical Director of Innovation and Executive Vice President for Institute Development before moving into expanded roles in corporate healthcare.
No statement by Roy Smythe
In the news release announcing his departure as CEO of SomaLogic Inc., Roy Smythe received praise and thanks.
The announcement of his departure as CEO does not include a statement by Roy Smythe.
Over the past 12 months, 25% of all outgoing CEOs remained silent in the departure announcement, according to data compiled by exechange. Departing CEOs who did make a statement said an average of 109 words. The longest statement was 510 words. The shortest statement was 23 words. Leadership transitions in which departing CEOs provide conspicuously short or no explanations for their move are statistically associated with elevated pressure and show an increased incidence of Push-out Scores above the critical threshold of 5, according to exechange data.
39% of CEOs are forced out or fired
When CEO departures are announced, exechange determines the Push-out Score on a scale of 0 to 10 to assess how likely it is that the chief executive was pushed out or felt pressure to leave the position, with 0 being most likely a voluntary move and 10 being most likely a forced exit. Anything over a 5 indicates that there are valid reasons to believe an executive may have been pushed out.
Of the 320 CEO departures in the Russell 3000 Index evaluated over the past 12 months (March 28, 2022, to March 27, 2023), the average Push-out Score was 6.1, according to exechange data. References to conduct issues, disagreements and irregularities lead to the highest Push-out Scores. When performance issues, time with family or personal reasons were cited as departure reasons, the average Push-out Scores were also significantly elevated.
Around 39% of the CEO departure events from the past 12 months received Push-out Scores of 8 or higher.
In other words, in the past 12 months, three in eight departing CEOs were forced out or fired.
Push-out Score for Roy Smythe’s move determined
The Push-out Score regarding Roy Smythe’s move is explained point by point in the exechange report.
Read the full story in the exechange report 14.2023 ($).