French technology company Atos announced the appointment of Paul Saleh as its new chief executive. Currently serving as the chief financial officer, Saleh will take over as CEO.
This comes as the company faces challenges and warns that free cash flow for the year’s second half will be slightly below its initial target.
Share Price Plummets, Fourth CEO in Less Than Two Years:
Atos shares plunged by 16% in early trading following the announcement. The stock has experienced a 40% decline since the beginning of the year.
Paul Saleh became the company’s fourth CEO in less than two years as Atos grappled with profit warnings and restructuring challenges.
Yves Bernaert Departs After Transformation Period:
Yves Bernaert, the outgoing CEO, is leaving the company after an “intense period of transformation,” according to Atos.
The company also noted that Jacques-Francois de Prest will join as CFO, bringing experience from roles at Mobivia and Vodafone.
Challenges in Restructuring Plan:
Reports suggest that Atos’ restructuring plan is facing difficulties, particularly regarding negotiating the sale of its loss-making Tech Foundations arm.
The company stated it had not filed a request to open conciliation proceedings with creditors.
A meeting between Atos and Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky’s EPEI, a potential buyer for Tech Foundations, is reportedly scheduled in the coming days.
Focus on Debt Refinancing and Business Sales:
CEO Saleh will prioritize efforts such as refinancing debt, negotiating the sale of Tech Foundations, and selling the company’s Big Data & Security (BDS) activities to Airbus.
The challenges faced by Atos underscore the need for strategic decisions to navigate the evolving landscape.