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Company Restates, CFO Leaves: Sense a Pattern?

Hanover Compressor switches CFOs, pulls plug on revenues. Also: Sapient CFO leaves in midst of layoffs, Phillip Morris reportedly looking inside fo...
David KatzFebruary 27, 2002

>>Think we’ve seen this old two-step before: issue a restatement and send your CFO elsewhere… Happened again Tuesday in Texas energy patch… Struggling to swat away annoying Enron comparisons, execs at equipment outsourcer Hanover Compressor named John Jackson as new finance chief… Held same title at Denver-based Duke Energy Field Services, a $10 billion, Duke Energy-Phillips Petroleum joint venture… Incumbent Hanover finance chief William Goldberg—no Andy Fastow, he—moves to vice chairman of the board…

Still, there was that off-balance-sheet partnership… Hanover owned up to incorrectly recognizing revenue for joint venture involved in leasing of gas-processing equipment mounted on barges off Nigerian coast… Deal led to cuts of about $20 million in revenue and $4 million in net income for 2000 and first three quarters of 2001… Also spawned Enron-like buzz in Wall Street Journal last month, SEC probe… In Tuesday restatement, company trimmed $63 million overall off its $1.4 billion in total revenue for seven quarters through September 30, 2000… Market seemed to like cleaning of slate, with share price closing at $16.02 on day of moves, up nearly two bucks… But still a way from year-to-date’s high of $41.96 on March 9, 2001…

>>CFOs more likely to suggest downsizings than personally take part in them, but here’s switch… Recession-battered business and tech consultancy Sapient Corp. said finance chief Edward G. Goldfinger is leaving, along with 545 laid-off consultants and administrators… But Goldfinger will land on feet, having accepted CFO post for unnamed private, Boston-based, Web-testing company, according to Sapient… Departing CFO says interest was piqued by prospect of taking an “earlier-stage company” through to IPO…

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Senior vice president Susan D. Johnson, firm’s CFO from 1994 to 1999, to fill slot as acting CFO while company hunts for new one… As finance chief, Johnson key player in company’s 1996 IPO… lately focusing on improving business development processes… Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Sapient, which now employs 1,900, said it’s taking restructuring charge of $50 million to $55 million in first quarter, and that the layoffs would save it $60 million a quarter over next six months…

>>Philip Morris Cos. likely to pick insider to fill post of CFO Louis Camilleri when he ascends to CEO later this year, Reuters reported Tuesday… Top contenders: Nancy DeLisi and Roger Deromedi

Camilleri said to be grooming DeLisi, Philip Morris treasurer since October 1999, for the post… Food industry analysts like Deromedi’s 20 years of experience in their business… As co-CEO and head of the international division of company’s Kraft Foods subsidiary, he’s responsible for about 25 percent of Kraft’s annual operating revenue of nearly $34 billion… Philip Morris hasn’t hired headhunting firm, says Reuters…

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