Getronics management forced to leave

Getronics management forced to leave

The management board of IT service provider Getronics has been ousted after an internal dispute on how to run the company.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Peter van Voorst, and Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Jan Docter, were asked to leave by the company's supervisory board after "a difference of opinion" on how to manage the company, Getronics said.

With immediate effect, Axel Rückert and Klaas Wagenaar will take over daily management of the 25,000 person global company as chairman and vice-chairman, respectively. The official nomination of Rückert and Wagenaar to the management board will be proposed at a shareholder meeting on April 9.

Getronics is in the midst of a broad financial restructuring effort to cut its $US487 million in net debt, much of it amassed when the Amsterdam company bought US rival Wang Global in 1999.

Customers have been asking questions about Getronics' continuity since November last year when the company announced a second round of job cuts to further reduce its cost base.

Earlier this week, Getronics said 60 per cent of its bondholders now back a life-saving debt swap.

The new management board supported the swap, Getronics said.

Rückert and Wagenaar had experience with large-scale financial restructuring and recovery operations, the company said. Rückert would be responsible for customers, strategy and operations, while Wagenaar would focus on the financial revitalisation of the company and related activities.

Van Voorst joined Getronics and its predecessors in 1969 and became part of the company's management in 1985. He was named chairman and CEO in 2001. Docter has been CFO since 1988.

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