AM I NEXT? NO LOVE AT CAMPBELL'S FOODS

Am I Next? Major changes coming to Campbell's Foods.

UPDATE: JULY 11, 2019 — CAMPBELL’S CANS 80 NORTH AMERICAN MANAGERS

Continuing with its restructuring activities, a Campbell’s spokesperson has announced that “Today we communicated to a small number of North American employees that their positions have been eliminated.” referring to the 80 middle- and upper-level managers who were laid off. Half the layoffs occurred in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and South the half of them located in middle and upper managers will be in the Philadelphia and the Southern New Jersey region.

In June, the company completed the divestiture of its Fresh Division with the sale of Bolthouse Farms to an affiliate of a Los Angeles-based private equity firm, Butterfly Equity.

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It appears that asset sales, cost-cutting, and restructuring is on the menu at the iconic Camden, New Jersey-based Campbell’s if New York City, New York-based hedge fund Third Point wins a proxy fight to replace the entire board of directors. Third Point’s activism is well-known and it appears that Third Point has also taken a major position in Nestlé which it believes is poorly managed and in need of drastic restructuring. 

According to published reports, Third Point’s original intent was to arrange the sale of the entire company to maximize shareholder return on investment. 

In response to activist pressures, Campbell’s has undertaken a “strategic review,” and has suggested that its desire is “to optimize its current portfolio, divest certain businesses and pay down debt, while also working to reduce costs.” 

Campbell’s interim President and CEO Keith McLoughlin said, “Campbell’s Board of Directors considered a full slate of strategic options, including optimizing the portfolio, divesting businesses, splitting the company, and pursuing a sale. The Board concluded that, at this time, the best path forward to drive shareholder value is to focus the company on two core businesses in the North American market with a proven consumer packaged goods business model. Importantly, the Board remains open and committed to evaluating all strategic options to enhance value in the future. The entire statement can be found here.

Standard corporate-speak for trying anything to boost share prices and leave the existing board and management intact. 

There is little or no doubt that change is arriving at Campbell’s and that employees should take note.

Change is coming. There will always be a tomorrow, no matter how much you may try to ignore it. There are no guarantees in life, or promises for a bright future. Just because something bad hasn't happened yet, doesn't mean it won't. It can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere. No one is guaranteed to wake up tomorrow and still have a job by evening. Are you now wondering, Am I Next?
 

AM I NEXT? NO LOVE AT UNIVISION

Am I Next? Univision to restructure, layoff at least 240 employees.

New York, New York-based Univision has announced that they will be laying off 240 employees as part of a company-wide restructuring effort that will also see the divestiture of certain assets.

According to a company spokesperson, "We have concluded a company-wide strategic review aimed at reorienting our operations to ensure we are positioned to most effectively compete in an evolving media marketplace.”

“We are implementing a plan to rejuvenate and re-energize the company with a rededication to our core mission of serving the US Hispanic community. As part of this plan, we are both reducing our workforce in various divisions around the company, as well as adding resources and capabilities to strengthen our core business.

While it is extremely difficult to lose valued employees, we are confident that our actions – along with our previously-announced process to explore the sale of the Gizmodo Media Group and The Onion portfolio – will enable us to focus on and invest in our core assets, which is necessary to ensure we remain the leading and unwavering voice, advocate and source of information for the Hispanic community."

Are you wondering, Am I Next?

AM I NEXT? GE DIGITAL RESTRUCTURING & ASSET SALE (UPDATE)

Am I Next? Restructuring and Asset Sale at GE Digital

UPDATE: APRIL 12, 2019 GE DIGITAL CONTINUES RESTRUCTURING

The company has announced that it will be laying off roughly 172 employees at its two offices located in San Ramon, California.

The company was quick to add that the layoff decision was driven by normal and customary business reasons and NOT the result of a proposed plan implement a spin-off into a standalone company. Yeah Right!

A company spokesperson noted, "As we continue to evolve the GE Digital business, we are making changes that give GE Digital the best structure to speed product delivery for customers and meet market demands.” yada, yada, yada. Look for the spin-off notice in the near future and do not be surprised if layoffs continue as the new entity consolidates its divisions.

UPDATE: DECEMBER 26, 2018: GE DIGITAL SELLS 90% OF SERVICEMAX TO INVESTOR SILVER LAKE.

San Ramon, California-based GE Digital and Menlo Park, California-based technology investor Silver Lake have announced an agreement for GE Digital to sell a majority stake in ServiceMax, a leading provider of cloud-based software productivity tools for field service technicians to Silver Lake.

GE will retain a 10% equity ownership interest in ServiceMax.

For those unfamiliar with ServiceMax, the company offers scalable cloud-based field service software that manages customers, calls, and employees. There is significant competition from companies such as SalesForce and Microsoft.

Am I Next? GE Digital sells 90% of Servicemax

According to ServiceMax CEO Scott Berg, “ServiceMax has a strong foundation of customers inside and outside the GE customer base. In Silver Lake, we have found a partner with a technology growth mindset and unique expertise in separating companies into standalone businesses. Joining the Silver Lake family will provide the investment we need in continued technology development and market expansion in areas where we have seen significant traction, such as medical devices, construction and manufacturing industries. The new company structure gives us both the flexibility to provide solutions to all industrial manufacturers and the strategic backing of GE to continue to pursue the industrial asset operator markets.”

The transaction will close in early 2019 and employees should not be surprised if Silver Lake, who has invested in and guided a number of iconic brand-name companies, implements organizational personnel changes.

Am I Next? Jack Welch’s Prime Directive to Managers

It appears that the cash-strapped General Electric is returning to basics after a disastrous decade under CEO Jeffrey Immelt and implementing the legendary GE CEO Jack Welch’s prime directive to managers.

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Boston, Massachusetts-based General Electric is continuing its restructuring and cost-cutting efforts by hiring an investment bank to auction off a portion of its San Ramon, California-based GE Digital, a signature initiative of former CEO, Jeff Immelt. 

It is unknown which assets will be sold and how many employees will be affected by the sale or discontinuance of divisions and departments.

GE apparently plans to keep certain software-based process control and monitoring products for internal use and may no longer make these software products available to external companies. There is tremendous value residing in the software library and it remains to be seen how this will be deployed in the future. For now, it is wait and watch – and, of course, plan ahead.

Change is coming. There will always be a tomorrow, no matter how much you may try to ignore it. There are no guarantees in life, or promises for a bright future. Just because something bad hasn't happened yet, doesn't mean it won't. It can happen to anyone, anytime, anywhere ... are you now wondering, Am I Next?