PS Business Parks CFO Ed Stokx leaves at short notice

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After almost 14 years on the job
  • Thanks and good wishes for Stokx
  • Search for a successor

(exechange) — Glendale, California, August 15, 2017 — Ed Stokx, finance chief of PS Business Parks, leaves. It is a change at short notice. As announced by PS Business Parks, Inc. in a news release published on Monday, August 14, 2017 and in a regulatory filing published on Tuesday, August 15, 2017, Edward A. (Ed) Stokx leaves the post as Chief Financial Officer at the real estate investment trust (REIT) in a surprising move after almost 14 years on the job, effective August 31, 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, only 18 percent of the CFOs who departed over the past twelve months left after more than ten years. Overall, the average tenure of those who left was 5.6 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Stokx’ move comes 13 months after Maria Hawthorne took over as CEO of PS Business Parks, Inc.

PS Business Parks will undertake a search for a successor.

No reason given

In the announcement, PS Business Parks did not explicitly explain the reason for Stokx’ imminent move, opening the door for speculation.

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

Alarm signal

Generally speaking, it is often an alarm signal for stockholders when a CFO leaves the post at short notice and without comprehensible reasons being given.

“Resigned”

PS Business Parks said: “Edward A. Stokx, Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of the Company, resigned from his position with the Company effective August 31, 2017.”

Share price rise since September 2015

The change follows a rise in the share price of PS Business Parks, Inc. since September 2015.

Chaired by Ronald L. Havner, Jr.

PS Business Parks, Inc. is chaired by Ronald L. Havner, Jr.

Ronald L. Havner, Jr. has been Chairman of the Board of PS Business Parks since March 1998.

CEO: Maria Hawthorne

Maria Hawthorne serves as CEO of PS Business Parks, Inc. Maria R. Hawthorne was named CEO and elected to the Board of Directors on July 1, 2016. She has been President of PS Business Parks since August 2015. She has been with PS Business Parks and its predecessors for over three decades, having served numerous managerial roles in her tenure with the Company.

On the job as CFO since 2003

Edward A. Stokx, a certified public accountant, has been Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of the Company since December 2003 and Executive Vice President since March 2004.

Stokx has overall responsibility for the Company’s finance and accounting functions.

In addition, he has responsibility for executing the Company’s financial initiatives.

Stokx joined Center Trust, a developer, owner, and operator of retail shopping centers in 1997.

Prior to his promotion to Chief Financial Officer and Secretary in 2001, he served as Senior Vice President, Finance and Controller.

After Center Trust’s merger in January 2003 with another public REIT, Stokx provided consulting services to various entities.

Prior to joining Center Trust, Stokx was with Deloitte and Touche from 1989 to 1997, with a focus on real estate clients.

Stokx earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Loyola Marymount University.

Unplanned

As a general rule, when a top leader announces to step aside with no successor available, it is 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 Ed Stokx’ 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 34.2017 ($).