In Business This Week: HEADLINER: THOMAS ENGIBOUS
A 20-YEAR MAN FOR TEXAS INSTRUMENTS
As a Chicago-area high school student in the early 1970s, Thomas Engibous built a digital computer that added numbers by flashing neon bulbs. The project led him into chip engineering and, in 1976, to Texas Instruments. On June 20, the 43-year-old was named president and CEO, replacing Jerry Junkins, who died on May 29 during a business trip to Europe. TI Director James Adams says Engibous stands out as a strategic thinker: "He takes his time on the big decisions and doesn't on the smaller ones."
Engibous is taking over the Dallas chipmaker at a critical time. Tumbling chip prices are hurting TI's profits, and net income could fall 34% from 1995's $1.1 billion. But he promises no radical changes anytime soon. "I've been a member of the strategy team since 1993," he points out.
Engibous isn't all engineer. For inspiration, he cruises open water in his 1974 Chris-Craft Commander. "Every time he gets promoted, he buys a bigger boat," jokes pal Walden Rhines, CEO of Mentor Graphics. Does that mean a yacht is in view?EDITED BY KELLEY HOLLAND $by By Gary McWilliamsReturn to top
AOL'S PRESIDENT LOGS OFF
IT WAS A SHORT-LIVED romance. On June 24, after four months on the job, William Razzouk resigned as president and COO of America Online. The 48-year-old Federal Express veteran was hired early this year to impose some order at the fast-growing online service provider, which is suffering from intensified competition and controversy over its billing practices. AOL's explanation for the abrupt departure: Razzouk's family had second thoughts about leaving Memphis, and CEO Stephen Case wanted a more hands-on role ahead of a planned marketing blitz this fall. But sources close to AOL said clashes of management styles played a role, as did Razzouk's failure to develop rapport with many on the AOL team. Razzouk couldn't be reached for comment.EDITED BY KELLEY HOLLANDReturn to top
CHARITY TELLS PRU: NOT SO FAST
PRUDENTIAL SECURITIES looked smart in the spring of 1995 when it pulled some $39 million it was owed by the Foundation for New Era Philanthropy out of a margin account New Era had there. But now, the foundation's trustee, Arlin Adams, is suing Pru to force it to give up that money--and more--to help repay charities and creditors stiffed when New Era collapsed. Prudential calls the suit "groundless" and pledges to fight vigorously. Adams sued a day after filing a proposed settlement that would help give charities that lost money with New Era about 65 cents on the dollar.EDITED BY KELLEY HOLLANDReturn to top
WHEN IS A MERGER REALLY an acquisition? Bell Atlantic has long insisted that its $20.5 billion deal for Nynex is a joining of equals, even though it will keep the name Bell Atlantic and make BA Chairman Ray Smith, 58, CEO of the combined company for several years. But under a 1913 antimerger law, making the deal a merger means Congress must approve it. So on June 26, BA announced that it will simply acquire Nynex--sort of. The companies insist that in practice, theirs is still a "merger of equals."EDITED BY KELLEY HOLLANDReturn to top