Ooh, Spooky, Very Spooky: CFOs Take on New Jobs

HoustonStreet finance chief jumps to Aprisma, while biotech vet moves to Corgentech. Also, Province Healthcare hires a new finance boss.
Jennifer CaplanOctober 31, 2001
  • Will Franklin is moving up the ranks at Ptek Holdings, an Atlanta-based communications and data services provider. Franklin was promoted to the CFO post after serving as finance chief for the company’s conferencing unit. He replaces Pat Jones, who was not only Ptek’s CFO but also chief legal officer. Jones will retain his responsibilities as legal officer.

    Prior to joining Ptek, Franklin served as president and CEO at Clifford Electronics, an international consumer electronics company based in Los Angeles. Before becoming CEO at Clifford, Franklin was head of the company’s finance department. Franklin began his career in public accounting, working primarily in the audit and SEC compliance areas. Franklin has a B.S. in finance from California State University and an M.B.A from the University of Southern California. He is also a C.P.A.

    It’s not surprising Franklin was promoted. Ptek’s conferencing business, which offers a range of teleconferencing services to corporations, has been on a notable upward trend in recent months. Under Franklin’s guidance, the unit experienced a 66 percent revenue increase in Q2 over the same period the previous year. Revenues were up to $28.6 million in the second quarter, sparked in large part by the events of 9/11, as companies look for alternatives to travel and ways to reduce expenses. Managers at Ptek expect the company to beat its revised earnings guidance for the third and fourth quarter of 2001. Third-quarter results will be disclosed on November 8.

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  • Richard Powers is the new CFO at Corgentech Inc., a privately held biotechnology company that specializes in therapies for treating cardiovascular diseases. Powers joins the Palo Alto, California-based company from Eclipse Surgical Technologies, where he served as executive vice president and CFO.

    While at Eclipse, Powers led the company’s restructuring following its merger with CardioGenesis Corp. He also managed international sales and marketing operations for the company. Prior to the merger with Eclipse, Powers served as executive vice president and chief financial officer at CardioGenesis and helped take that company public in 1996. Before joining CardioGenesis, Powers held the CFO post at Syntex Corp. and helped oversee that company’s sale to Roche in 1994. Powers received an M.B.A. from University of Rochester and holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Canisius College in Buffalo.

  • Managers at Brentwood, Tennessee-based hospital operator Province Healthcare Co. hired Stephen Ray as chief financial officer. Ray will take over his new role on January 1. He replaces Richard Gore, who retired in mid-August. Most recently, Ray was CFO at Health Management Associates, a Florida-based hospital operator. He served as an executive officer for Health Management for nearly 19 years.

    Ray will be moving to a company in stable financial condition. Earnings rose 13 percent in Q3 to $22 million, up from the $19 million posted in last year’s third quarter. “Our objective continues to be 25 percent EPS growth annually,” said Martin Nash, company president and CEO, in a recent statement. In the third quarter the company’s revenues increased 10 percent to $13.2 million, versus $11.9 million posted in the same quarter of 2000. Earlier this month, the company issued $150 million of seven-year convertible subordinated notes. The placement was one of the first to be completed since 9/11.

    Since August, Province Healthcare has acquired four hospitals. The company owns or leases 18 general acute-care hospitals in 11 states and provides management services to 34 non-urban hospitals in 13 states.

  • David Jacobson was hired as CFO at Catalyst International Inc., a Milwaukee-based provider of supply-chain management technology. The company has gone through a bit of a management shakeup in recent weeks. John Gorman was recently appointed executive vice president of operations, and Michael Pridavka was named EVP of sales and marketing.

    Prior to joining Catalyst, Jacobson was senior vice president and chief financial officer at Global CommerceZone Inc., an Internet infrastructure company. Before that, he served as CFO at, a provider of online savings coupons. Jacobson helped coordinate that company’s private financing and initial public offering. Earlier in his career, he held a number of senior finance positions, including CFO at SMS Technology Inc. Jacobson graduated magna cum laude with a B.S. in business administration and accounting from Indiana University. He is also a C.P.A.

    Jacobson will have his hands full getting his new employer back on track. The company posted a net loss of $2.2 million (27 cents per share), excluding a one-time charge of $659,000 for severance costs in the third quarter. Third-quarter revenues came in at $7.9 million, down from $10.2 million for the same period in 2000. Managers attributed the decline to longer sales cycles and, of course, the economic downturn.

  • Howard Smith has landed the top finance job at Durham, New Hampshire-based Aprisma Management Technologies Inc., a data analysis and service assurance software specialist. Smith will be responsible for managing the privately held company’s transition to an independent, public company.

    Prior to joining Aprisma, Smith served as CFO at HoustonStreet Inc., a software and services provider in the energy industry. He was also CFO and head of business development at Copyright Clearance Center, a Web-based clearinghouse for managing, licensing, and distributing secondary-use copyrights for text and photographic media. Before that, Smith was a director of mergers and acquisitions at Fleet Corporate Finance/Bank Boston-Robertson Stephens. Smith also held additional investment banking and management consulting positions with Coopers & Lybrand L.L.P., Baldwin & Clarke Corporate Finance Inc., Dean Witter Reynolds Capital Markets Inc., and Booz, Allen & Hamilton Inc.