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Hertz turns to new CEO to overcome struggles

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  • | 4:43 p.m. December 14, 2016
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ESTERO — Car rental giant Hertz, coming off another poor earnings performance and amid a three-year struggle to gain market share, has named a new president and CEO.

Former GE executive Kathryn Marinello, with experience in senior leadership roles in banking, business service and technology, will replace John Tague as president and CEO, the Estero-based company says in a statement. Tague, named president and CEO in late 2014, will retire, the company adds. The leadership change is effective Jan. 3, 2017.

Marinello held several positions at GE over more than a decade. She ran GE Fleet Services at GE Commercial Finance, and before that she oversaw GE Insurance Solutions. After GE she was president and CEO of two other companies, outsourcing firm Stream Global Services and payroll business Ceridian Corp. Marinello remains on the board of GM.

Activist investor Carl Icahn, Hertz's largest shareholder, approves of the hiring. "I am excited about Hertz and its prospects with Kathy at the helm,” says Icahn in the statement. “Kathy has a history as a proven CEO and I believe she is the right person to lead Hertz as we move forward. Her consistent track record of successes in consumer and financial services, as well as technology businesses, is impressive. She was extremely well-regarded at GE and successfully turned around Ceridian and Stream.”

Hertz also announced several changes to its board of directors. Marinello will replace Tague in early January, and the board's three longest serving directors, Non-Executive Chairwoman Linda Fayne Levinson, Compensation Committee Chairman Carl Berquist and Financing Committee Chairman Michael Durham, will also leave the board at the end of the year. The board will have seven directors following their departure.

The company's third quarter earnings report, released early last month, was another in a series of setbacks. Quarterly profit fell from $237 million in 2015 to $42 million and earnings per share fell well under analyst's expectations.


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