After an extensive search, Caterpillar said Friday it had chosen Andrew Bonfield of Britain’s National Grid to replace Brad Halvorson as chief financial officer.
The announcement of Bonfield’s hiring came on the day Halvorson retired after more than three decades with Caterpillar. He recently helped steer the construction and mining giant through an unprecedented downturn in its business.
Caterpillar’s tax practices have also been under investigation, with the IRS demanding that it pay $2 billion in taxes and penalties for shifting profit to its Swiss unit to reduce its U.S. tax bill.
Bonfield’s appointment is effective Sept. 1, with Finance Services Division Vice President Joe Creed filling in as interim CFO.
“Andrew’s global financial experience across a variety of industries will serve Caterpillar and our stakeholders well,” CEO Jim Umpleby said in a news release. “We look forward to him joining our executive office.”
Bonfield has spent eight years at National Grid, where he oversaw the $7 billion sale of the company’s majority stake in its gas network to a consortium led by Australian investment bank Macquarie. It was reported as one of the biggest British infrastructure deals in recent times.
Bonfield’s experience also includes serving as CFOs of three other major corporations — Cadbury plc from February 2009 to March 2010, Bristol-Myers Squibb from 2002 to 2008, and SmithKline Beecham from 1998 to 1999.
He joined SmithKline Beecham in 1990 after obtaining a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Natal in Durban and qualifying as a chartered accountant in South Africa.
Since joining Caterpillar in 1997, Creed has held numerous positions of increasing responsibility within Corporate Accounting, the Track-Type Tractors Division, and the Large Power Systems Division. He served as CFO for the Energy & Transportation segment prior to becoming Financial Services Division vice president in 2017.