Xerox CFO Leslie Varon leaves at short notice

  • Signs for push-out forces
  • After about a year on the job
  • Laud, praise and good wishes for Varon
  • Bill Osbourn, Jr. takes over

(management-change.com) — Norwalk, Connecticut, December 02, 2016 — Leslie Varon, finance chief of Xerox, leaves. It is a change at short notice. As announced by Xerox Corporation in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Friday, December 02, 2016, Leslie F. Varon leaves the post as Chief Financial Officer at the document management technology and services company after about a year on the job, effective December 31, 2016.

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

Varon leaves the company effective in March 2017.

Varon’s duties are taken over by Bill Osbourn, Jr., most recently co-CFO at Time Warner Cable.

Osbourn, Jr. will serve as chief financial officer of Xerox Corporation following the completion of the company’s planned separation into two publicly-traded companies at year end.

The fact that Varon’s successor is brought in from outside suggests that the board may seek to stimulate change with fresh ideas and new initiatives.

In general, an outsider doesn’t have the constraints of an insider when it comes to leading painful changes or making unpopular decisions.

“He brings strong experience in driving change”

Jeff Jacobson, president of the Xerox Technology business and CEO-designate of Xerox following the separation, said, referring to Osbourn, Jr.: “Bill is a pragmatic and tenacious leader and we are thrilled to have him as part of the Xerox leadership team. He brings strong experience in driving change, which will serve us well as we continue our strategic transformation program and look to maximize the potential of this great company.”

No reason given

In the announcement, Xerox did not explicitly explain the reason for Varon’s imminent move, leaving room for speculation.

“Retire”

Xerox said: Varon “will step down as CFO as of the separation date and will retire from Xerox in March 2017”.

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

Share price decline

The change follows a decline in the share price of Xerox Corporation since February 2015.

Carl Icahn holds 9.77 percent stake

Carl Icahn reported a 9.77 percent stake in Xerox Corporation as of September 30, 2016. Carl Icahn is an activist shareholder.

Chaired by Ursula Burns

Xerox Corporation is chaired by Ursula M. Burns.

Burns was elected President and Director in April 2007; Chief Executive Officer in July 2009; and Chairman of the Board in May 2010.

Jeff Jacobson, president of the Xerox Technology business, is CEO-designate of Xerox following the separation.

On the job as CFO since 2015

During a 36-year career with Xerox, Varon has served in a variety of senior finance roles including as the company’s corporate controller, vice president of finance for North America and head of investor relations.

Leslie Varon is chief financial officer for Xerox Corporation. She has been serving in this role since November 2015 and was appointed a vice president of the corporation in August 2001.

Varon is responsible for all finance, treasury, investor relations, risk management, mergers and acquisitions, tax, audit, procurement and real estate operations at Xerox.

Varon has served in numerous senior roles across Xerox. In February 2015, she assumed the position of vice president of investor relations and was responsible for communicating and interpreting Xerox’s financial results and business strategies to shareholders and the investment community.

Previously, Varon served as corporate controller responsible for driving the company’s finance transformation initiatives including the global finance shared service centers, corporate financial planning and analysis, global real estate and Enterprise Risk Management.

In October 2004, she was named vice president, finance and operational support for Xerox North America, providing financial and strategic leadership for the company’s sales operations throughout the United States and Canada.

From 1997-2004, Varon was head of Xerox investor relations and in 2001, she was named to the additional role of corporate secretary.

Varon joined Xerox in 1980 as a financial analyst and proceeded to hold a number of operational finance and controller assignments in Xerox’s sales operations.

In 1993, she was named director of corporate audit and led all facets of Xerox’s worldwide audit organization.

Varon holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Binghamton University and a master’s degree in business administration with concentrations in finance and marketing from Virginia Tech.

Varon will retire “following the completion of the separation and after ensuring a smooth transition,” Xerox said.

Signs for push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Leslie F. Varon’s move.

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

Read the full story in the management-change.com report 46.2016 ($).