MicroVision CEO Alex Tokman leaves abruptly

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After almost twelve years in the position
  • Praise and thanks for Tokman
  • Perry Mulligan taking over
  • Tokman said 55 words

(exechange) — Redmond, Washington, November 15, 2017 — Alex Tokman, chief executive of MicroVision, leaves. It is an abrupt change. As announced by MicroVision, Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Wednesday, November 15, 2017, Alexander Y. (Alex) Tokman has already left the post as chief executive officer at the technology company after almost twelve years in the position, effective November 13, 2017.

It is the end of an era.

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 twelve months was 8.7 years, according to data compiled by exechange. Only 35 percent of the CEOs who departed over the past twelve months left the position after more than ten years.

Tokman’s duties are taken over by Perry Mulligan, a former senior vice president of operations at Emulex Corporation.

Already a director

Mulligan is already a director of MicroVision. Often a board member is a last resort, someone who is turned to in desperation when a company cannot find suitable candidates. On the other hand, directors-turned-executives represent a blend of outsider and insider.

They don’t have the constraints of a pure insider when it comes to leading painful changes or making unpopular decisions, and they have more company knowledge than a pure outsider.

Having been a director, Mulligan understands the expectations and dynamics of the board and has knowledge of MicroVision’s organization, risk-management practices and strategy.

“Step back and spend more time with my family”

Tokman’s sudden departure from the post of CEO is explained as follows. Alexander Tokman said: “After a decade of guiding MicroVision, I have decided it is time to step back and spend more time with my family.”

The phrase “spend more time with my family” opens the door to speculation.

Precise information about the future plans of Tokman was not immediately available.


MicroVision said: “Effective November 13, 2017, Alexander Tokman resigned as Chief Executive Officer and Director of MicroVision, Inc. …, and Perry M. Mulligan was appointed as Chief Executive Officer in addition to his role as a director of the Company.”

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of MicroVision, Inc. since September 2017.

Chaired by Brian Turner

MicroVision, Inc. is chaired by Brian Turner.

In the position of CEO since 2006

Alexander Y. Tokman has served as President, Chief Executive Officer and a director of the Company since January 2006.

Tokman served as the Company’s President and Chief Operating Officer from July 2005 to January 2006.

Tokman joined the Company after a 10-year tenure at GE Healthcare, a subsidiary of General Electric, where he led several global businesses, most recently as General Manager of its Global Molecular Imaging and Radiopharmacy multi-technology business unit from 2003 to 2005.

Prior to that, between 1995 and 2003, Tokman served in various cross-functional and cross-business leadership roles at GE where he led the definition and commercialization of several medical modalities product segments including PET/CT, which added over $500 million of revenue growth to the company within the first three years of its commercial introduction.

Tokman is a certified Six Sigma and Design for Six Sigma (DFSS) Black Belt and Master Black Belt and as one of GE’s Six Sigma pioneers, he drove the quality culture change across GE Healthcare in the late 1990s.

From November 1989 to March 1995 Tokman served as new technologies programs lead and a head of the I&RD office at Tracor Applied Sciences a subsidiary of then Tracor, Inc.

Tokman has both an M.S. and B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.

Tokman will remain as president through the end of 2017 to assist with the transition.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Alex Tokman’s sudden move.

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

Read the full story in the exechange report 47.2017 ($).