McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook out after ‘poor judgment’ involving relationship with employee
McDonald’s board voted to remove CEO Steve Easterbrook, the fast-food giant announced on Sunday, citing “poor judgment involving a recent consensual relationship with an employee.”
Chris Kempczinski, the current president of McDonald’s USA, has been named CEO effective immediately. He will also join the board.
“Kempczinski succeeds Steve Easterbrook, who has separated from the Company following the Board’s determination that he violated company policy and demonstrated poor judgment involving a recent consensual relationship with an employee,” the company said.
McDonald’s CEO Easterbrook, who is divorced, wrote in an email to employees that the consensual relationship “was a mistake.”
“As for my departure, I engaged in a recent consensual relationship with an employee, which violated McDonald’s policy,” Easterbrook wrote. “This was a mistake. Given the values of the company, I agree with the board that it is time for me to move on. Beyond this, I hope you can respect my desire to maintain my privacy.”He also said that his time as CEO “have been the most fulfilling years of my working life.”
Easterbrook had served as CEO since March 2015. Easterbrook, who is British, joined McDonald’s in 1993 as a financial reporting manager based in London. Throughout his career, he served as the global chief brand officer, president of McDonald’s Europe, and CEO of McDonald’s U.K. He also spent time as a McDonald’s restaurant manager. On a now-removed corporate webpage, McDonald’s said Easterbrook led its turnaround “by sparking the evolution of its company culture.”
Enrique Hernandez Jr., chairman of McDonald’s board of directors, called new CEO Kempczinski “the best leader to set the vision and drive the plans for the Company’s continued success.”
“He has the right mix of skills and experience to lead us forward having run our U.S. business, where franchisees are delivering strong financial and operational results, and overseen global strategy, business development and innovation,” Hernandez said in a statement. “In particular, Chris was instrumental in the development of the Company’s strategic plan, which has enabled global growth and leadership, and has overseen the most comprehensive transformation of the U.S. business in McDonald’s history.”
Meanwhile, Joe Erlinger, president of the international operated markets, will take over Kempczinski’s most recent role as president of McDonald’s USA, effective immediately.
Shares of McDonald’s closed down 1.4%, -$2.76, on Friday to end the week at $193.94.
Trump Comments on Stock Market’s latest drop – says it’s ‘peanuts’
Trump says Tuesday’s market drop is ‘peanuts’
President Donald Trump played down the stock market’s losses on Tuesday as “peanuts” when compared with the importance of striking a good deal with China and the gains since his election.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average “was about 16,000 or 15,000 and now it’s almost at 30,000,” Trump said at the NATO summit in London. “It’s going to be at 30,000.”
“If the stock market goes up or down — I don’t watch the stock market. I watch jobs. Jobs are what I watch,” he added. Today’s move is “peanuts compared to — we have picked up record numbers so that’s OK. That’s the way I feel.”
The major stock indexes slid Tuesday after Trump said he thinks it would be a good idea to delay signing a trade deal with China after the 2020 presidential election. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 450 points at its lows on Tuesday, led lower by trade-vulnerable Apple, Caterpillar and 3M.
“In some ways, I like the idea of waiting until after the election for the China deal, but they want to make a deal now, and we will see whether or not the deal is going to be right,” Trump told reporters before U.S. markets opened Tuesday. When asked if he had a deal deadline, he added: “I have no deadline, no. … In some ways, I think it is better to wait until after the election if you want to know the truth.”
Despite his assurances that he doesn’t watch the market’s daily moves, Trump often tweets within hours of when the U.S. equity market reaches an all-time high. He has tweeted the keyword “stock market” 107 times since his inauguration
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