General Electric has been one of the biggest names in the business world for generations, selling everything from light bulbs and household appliances to large-scale wind turbines. Their products have been mainstays in American households, and their stock has been a reliable commodity for over a century. The company has been struggling lately, though, and it’s now headed for a management shakeup for the second time in as many years.
H. Lawrence Culp, who formerly served as chief executive officer at Danaher Corp., is now set to take over at GE, replacing the outgoing CEO John Flannery. Flannery had just taken over in 2017.
According to CNBC, GE will be absorbing a $23 billion noncash charge for its power business, as the company has fallen far short of its earnings expectations so far in 2018. But despite its recent turmoil, GE still has a chance to right the ship with new management in place, and Culp is optimistic.
“GE remains a fundamentally strong company with great businesses and tremendous talent,” the new CEO said in a statement. “It is a privilege to be asked to lead this iconic company. We will be working very hard in the coming weeks to drive superior execution, and we will move with urgency.”
GE has long been a pillar of American industry. It operates in more than 180 countries and has over 300,000 total employees. Many investors have historically considered GE stock to be one of the most reliable sources of dividend payments, right up there with the likes of Exxon and Apple. Recently, though, those dividends have fallen off—shareholders’ payments this year have dropped from 24 cents per share per quarter to just 12 cents. It’s only the third decrease in payout in the company’s 125-year history.
Now, it’s Culp’s job to get the company back on track. After retiring from his post as CEO of Danaher in 2015, he came highly regarded to GE. During his tenure at Danaher, the company’s revenue and market capitalization grew fivefold. As just the 14th person in history to take the helm at GE, he will certainly have big expectations to meet in his new position.