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Hedge funds and C-suites weekly: new CEO out at AMC Networks amid massive layoffs

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Here is your weekly roundup of the biggest news out of hedge funds and company top brass, all first covered on InvestingPro+.

Solid Power Inc (NASDAQ:) shares plummeted after it said Douglas Campbell is retiring as CEO and a member of the Board of Directors, effective immediately. The Solid Power Board has appointed David Jansen, the company’s Chair and President, as Interim CEO. Solid Power’s Board of Directors has commenced a comprehensive search process to identify a permanent CEO.

Lead Independent Director John Stephens said, “As we enter the next phase in our evolution and build on our momentum as a newly public company, Doug and the Board decided that now is the right time to identify a new leader who will drive our product development and commercialization capabilities.” Campbell said, “I remain as confident as ever in the future of Solid Power. I look forward to continuing as a significant shareholder of the company for years to come.” Shares lost 28% to $3.25 for the week.

AMC Networks (NASDAQ:) stock dropped after saying CEO Christina Spade has stepped down from her role after fewer than three months on the job. It also said it would cut about 20% of its U.S. workers as it deals with a challenging macro backdrop. The Board of Directors said it is currently finalizing a replacement for the CEO role. Shares lost 6.3% to $199.23 for the week.

Salesforce (NYSE:) said Bret Taylor will step down as Co-CEO of Salesforce, effective January 31, 2023. At that point, Marc Benioff will be Chair and CEO of the company. Taylor said, “After a lot of reflection, I’ve decided to return to my entrepreneurial roots. Salesforce has never been more relevant to customers, and with its best-in-class management team and the company executing on all cylinders, now is the right time for me to step away.” Shares lost 4.9% to $144.56 for the week.

WW International (NASDAQ:) said Amy O’Keefe will be leaving her role as CFO effective December 2, 2022 and will remain employed by the company until December 31, 2022 to support the finance team for the remainder of the year. Heather Stark will assume the role of interim Principal Financial Officer. Stark has been with WeightWatchers for 12 years, most recently as Head of North American Finance. Shares lost 3.2% to $3.94 for the week.

US Foods Holding (NYSE:) announced that Dave Flitman will become CEO effective Jan. 5, 2023. Flitman will also be a member of the US Foods Board of Directors. Since April 2021, Flitman has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Builders FirstSource Inc (NYSE:). From 2015 to 2018, he was CEO of Performance Foodservice, the largest segment of Performance Food Group (NYSE:), a U.S. foodservice distribution company. Shares rose fractionally for the week to $35.87.

Turning to hedge funds, Bloomberg reported that Bridgewater had erased most of its 2022 gains after a two-month rout.

And hedge fund Engine Capital, which owns some 1% of Univar (NYSE:), is urging the company to consider a sale or other options. Engine argues that preliminary takeout talks with Germany-based Brenntag SE show the company is “undervalued” and a “highly attractive acquisition target.” Shares gained 2.5% to $34.34 for the week.

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