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Thomson Reuters' CEO Glocer Out; Replaced by COO Smith

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Tom Glocer will retire as chief executive officer of Thomson Reuters (TRI), to be succeeded by James Smith, on Jan. 1. The move, announced after business hours on Thursday, comes in the wake of a substantial drop in the value of company stock, down 36% to $26.88 from a high of $42 in February.

Bloomberg reported that Smith, who became COO in a September restructuring, is from the Thomson Corp. side of the business, and in 2005 took charge of its academic publishing division. Reuters reported that Glocer is regarded as the rescuer of Reuters ten years ago through cost-cutting after the dot-com collapse. He also was responsible for putting together Reuters’ acquisition by Thomson Corp. In 2001, he had become the then-British company’s first American and first nonjournalist CEO.

Claudio Aspesi, a London-based analyst for Sanford C. Bernstein, was quoted saying, “The management change suggests that the improvements are not coming fast enough to please the board. The decline in the share price and the sense that the market division was encountering headwinds that had not been fully anticipated was of concern.”

The company also announced that it will have a new organizational structure with five divisions. The Reuters legacy Markets business will become part of a new division, to be called Financial and Risk Operations, and will be headed by David Craig. Craig formerly worked for Smith as head of the corporate governance business, one of the company’s best-performing sectors.

The other four divisions and their heads are: Legal, under Mike Suchsland; Intellectual Property & Science, under Chris Kibarian; Tax & Accounting, under Brian Peccarelli; and Global Growth Organization, under Shanker Ramamurthy.

All five heads of the new divisions will be reporting to Smith, as will Stephen Adler, Thomson Reuters editor-in-chief; Susan Taylor-Martin, president of media; and Jon Robson, who will head a new business development office.