Arctic Cat announced today that its highest official, Claude Jordan, is out after three years in charge as CEO and six years in a top spot with the company. Former CEO Chris Twomey will step in as interim CEO during the search for a new leader. In an odd twist of timing, on Saturday, May 31, the Star Tribune of Minneapolis featured Jordan in its weekly CEO Watch feature, pegging his 2013 personal earnings from Cat at $9.98 million. Here is today’s press release from Arctic Cat on the change at the top of the company:
ARCTIC CAT PRESS RELEASE
Arctic Cat Inc. announced today that Claude Jordan has stepped down as chairman and chief executive officer. Chris Twomey, who served as Arctic Cat’s CEO for 24 years, has been named interim chairman and CEO.
“On behalf of the board, I want to thank Claude for nearly six years of service to Arctic Cat, first as president and chief operating officer, and then as CEO for the last three years. During his tenure, Arctic Cat has grown from $465 million to over $700 million in annual sales, and the company entered the growing sports segment of the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle (ROV) market, with a line of side-by-side Wildcat pure-sport and trail models,” Twomey said.
“Claude and the board have mutually decided this is the right time, however, for new executive leadership at the company. It makes sense to set up the leadership team that will take the company forward to a successful future, as we enter a new fiscal year,” Twomey said. Tim Delmore, CFO, agreed to postpone his previously announced retirement during the transition, and the company anticipates appointing a new CEO and CFO “in the coming months,” Twomey said.
Twomey was Arctic Cat’s CEO from 1986 to 2010. He was named a director of the company in 1987 and was board chair from 2003 to 2012. During that time, Twomey led Arctic Cat through an initial public offering in 1990, grew revenues from $7.5 million to a peak of $780 million in 2007, entered the ATV business and expanded the company’s capabilities to include engine manufacturing at a new facility in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
“The company is in strong financial shape and the board has every confidence in Arctic Cat’s long-term growth prospects. We remain focused on growing through a robust pipeline of innovative new products and technologies, international expansion and market share gains, as well as enhancing profitability by achieving greater operating efficiencies,” Twomey said.
The board is beginning a search for a permanent CEO. An executive search firm is being retained to assist in filling the CEO position.