Armstrong CFO Jay Thompson leaves at short notice

  • Signs for push-out forces
  • After less than two years on the job
  • Laud, praise, thanks and good wishes for Thompson
  • Kim Boscan taking over in the interim
  • Search for a successor

(exechange) — Lancaster, Pennsylvania, April 12, 2017 — Jay Thompson, finance chief of Armstrong, leaves. It is a change at short notice. As announced by Armstrong Flooring, Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, John W. (Jay) Thompson, Chief Financial Officer, leaves the manufacturer of flooring products in a surprising move after less than two years on the job, effective May 08, 2017.

No company wants a CFO to flame out in the first years.

Thompson’s move comes twelve months after Donald R. Maier took over as CEO of Armstrong Flooring, Inc.

Armstrong will undertake a search for a successor.

Thompson’s duties are taken over in the interim by Kim Boscan, currently Vice President and Controller at Armstrong Flooring, Inc.

Thompson will be CFO at a private equity-backed company in the consumer packaged goods industry

Thompson “is leaving the Company effective May 8, 2017, for a position as CFO for a private equity-backed company in the consumer packaged goods industry”, Armstrong said.

The name of the company was not immediately disclosed.

“Resigning”

Armstrong said: “On April 7, 2017, John “Jay” W. Thompson, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Armstrong Flooring, Inc. …, notified the Company that he is resigning from the Company effective as of May 8, 2017.”

“Resignation does not arise from any disagreement”

“Mr. Thompson’s resignation does not arise from any disagreement on any matter relating to the Company’s operations, policies or practices, or regarding the general direction of the Company,” Armstrong said.

It is a phrase that may be intended to prevent false rumors. It may also fuel further speculation and raise more questions than it answers. Such a phrase should be read very carefully. The exact wording may be insightful.

Share price decline

The change follows a sharp decline in the share price of Armstrong Flooring, Inc. since March 2017.

ValueAct holds 16.53 percent stake

ValueAct Holdings, L.P. reported a 16.53 percent stake in Armstrong Flooring, Inc. as of December 31, 2016. ValueAct is a hedge fund.

Chaired by Larry S. McWilliams

Armstrong Flooring, Inc. is chaired by Larry S. McWilliams.

McWilliams is the Chair of the Company’s board of directors and also serves on the Nominating and Governance Committee.

CEO: Donald R. Maier

Donald R. Maier serves as CEO of Armstrong Flooring, Inc. Maier has been Chief Executive Officer and President at Armstrong Flooring, Inc. since March 2016. Maier served as the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President of Armstrong Flooring Products at Armstrong World Industries, Inc. from September 26, 2014 to March 30, 2016.

On the job as CFO since 2015

John W. Thompson has been the Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Armstrong Flooring, Inc. since March 30, 2016.

Thompson serves as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

He joined Armstrong World Industries on August 17, 2015, coming from TPG, where he held various key senior finance positions, including Senior Director of TPG Global Finance, and for several of its portfolio companies.

From 2004 to 2001, Thompson held several senior finance positions for PepsiCo, Inc., including Senior Finance Director of PepsiCo, Inc.’s chilled direct-store delivery business for several of the company’s key beverage brands.

Prior to joining PepsiCo, he held key finance, consulting and tax positions at Bain & Company, Inc., Goldman Sachs & Co. and KPMG, respectively.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Management Studies and a master’s degree in Accountancy from Rice University in Houston, Texas, as well as a master’s degree in Business Administration from Harvard Business School in Boston, Massachusetts.

Signs for push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Jay Thompson’s imminent 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 16.2017 ($).