Wednesday, 16 December 2015

CSC's New Chairman.....No!!


CSC has announced the retirements of Rodney Chase and Erik Brynjolfsson from its Board of Directors. It all seems to be very sudden. The announcement was made yesterday and already today their names have disappeared from the CSC website. It's like the fate of those who became "non-persons" in George Orwell's "1984", it is as if they never existed.

We wonder why Mr Brynjolfsson retired. He is relatively young, he only joined CSC's Board in 2010 and he is an acknowledged international expert in his field.
However, we shed no tears over the departure of Chairman Rodney Chase. As a non-exec he would have been directly involved in the ill advised nomination of Michael W Laphen to the posts of President and Chairman. He also failed to act when it was clear that Michael Laphen was in denial about CSC's real situation when the company was being driven to the edge of the cliff. He seems to have been too "Laphen compatible" and we think applied the same approach to his responsibility to oversee Michael Lawrie.

So we welcome a change of Chairman, but are astounded that CSC has named Michael Lawrie to this role. We have seen nothing to suggest he is stepping down from his executive positions as President and CEO. So CSC goes back to concentrating power and authority in the hands of one person, as it did previously. This is poor Corporate governance, and takes CSC back to the construct that allowed Michael Laphen to bring the company to its knees. Our response to this is a clear NO! Has CSC learned nothing from the Laphen era??

The CSC announcement talks about the nomination of Bruce Churchill as Lead Independent Director being a demonstration of the company's commitment to Corporate governance. The nomination of an outside director as Chairman would have been a much greater show of commitment than increasing Mike Lawrie's omnipotence