Rollier proposes Senard as successor at Michelin
Preparations for Michel Rollier’s eventual departure from Michelin are to commence after the Group managing general partner expressed his intention not to complete his term of office. According to Michelin bylaws this would occur when Rollier turns 72, however in agreement with the company’s Supervisory Board the 67-year old intends to recommend shareholders elect Jean-Dominique Senard –one of the company’s two non-general managing partners elected in May 2007 – to replace him as managing general partner. Shareholders are expected to vote on this at the Extraordinary Meeting scheduled for May 13, 2011. At this meeting shareholders will also be invited to approve resolutions to adjust the Group’s corporate governance procedures, Michelin notes.
For the time being, Rollier will remain a managing general partner according to his current terms of election. He will decide when to leave once the hand-over has been completed. “As the Group embarks on a new phase of dynamic growth, I wanted to prepare my succession,” he noted. “Working closely with Jean-Dominique over the past six years, I’ve come to appreciate his immense qualities, both as a person and as a business leader. If shareholders agree, I know that, when the time comes and after consulting with the Supervisory Board, I can pass him the baton in complete confidence. Jean-Dominique will then be able to lead the Group with the requisite skills and vision, in complete accordance with Michelin’s values.”
The succession process also involves a proposal to adjust the Group’s corporate governance procedures, as specified in several resolutions to be submitted to shareholder approval at the Extraordinary Meeting. This proposal includes limiting the terms of office for future managing partners, both general and non-general, to four years (renewable), plus an expansion of the Supervisory Board’s role; namely, a modification of bylaws in order to formally recognise its responsibility for gauging the quality of the partnership’s management. Instead of simply being consulted, as is the case today, the Board would be responsible for approving the proposed re-election or removal of future managing partners, as well as their salaries.
Michel Rollier has been a Managing General Partner of the Michelin Group since May 2005. After joining the Group in 1996, he primarily served as chief financial officer. Previously, he had built a long career with the International Paper Group. Proposed successor Jean-Dominique Senard, 58, has been a non-general managing partner of the Michelin Group since May 11, 2007. Before joining the Group in 2005 as chief financial officer and member of the Executive Committee, he exercised financial and operational responsibilities at Total, Saint-Gobain and Pechiney.
Managing partners, who according to the bylaws must be individuals and not legal entities, are elected by shareholders. They can be either general partners, who have unlimited personal liability for Michelin’s debts, or non-general partners. Should the resolutions be adopted, the partnership would be comprised of Michel Rollier and Jean-Dominique Senard, both managing general partners, and Didier Miraton, non-general managing partner.
The Supervisory Board currently has eight members elected by shareholders for four-year terms: Currently sitting on the Board are Eric Bourdais de Charbonnière (chairman), Pat Cox, Barbara Dalibard, Louis Gallois, François Grapotte, Pierre Michelin, Laurence Parisot and Benoît Potier. All qualify as independent.