Industry News

PolyOne Names Stephen D. Newlin Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer

Published on 2006-02-15. Author : SpecialChem

CLEVELAND -- PolyOne Corporation (NYSE: POL), a leading global polymer compounding and North American distribution company, announced the appointment of Stephen D. Newlin, president of the Industrial Sector of Ecolab Inc., as chairman, president and chief executive officer, effective February 21.

Newlin, 53, brings to PolyOne an extraordinarily strong background in sales and marketing, with a particular focus on supporting the customer through the delivery of value-added products and services. He also has significant experience in international operations, merger and acquisition, integration and change management.

"In Steve Newlin, we have found a leader with a broad, diverse skill set and the in-depth knowledge of global markets that comes only from having lived and worked abroad," said Farah M. Walters, chair of the Compensation and Governance Committee of PolyOne's Board of Directors. "Just as importantly, Steve believes in our mission and has confidence in PolyOne's potential to be a strong, healthy, growing Company that serves and rewards its stakeholders and outperforms its peers."

Newlin has been with Ecolab, a specialty chemical company, since 2003. A leading global developer and marketer of premium cleaning, sanitation, pest elimination, maintenance and repair products and services, the St. Paul, Minnesota-based company serves the hospitality, food service, health care and industrial markets. Earlier, Newlin spent more than two decades with Nalco Chemical Company (now Nalco Holding Company), where he ultimately served as president, chief operating officer and a director.

"Throughout his distinguished career, Steve Newlin has proved that he knows how to motivate people to embrace and accelerate change and to deliver value and results," said PolyOne Chairman William F. Patient, who has been serving as CEO. "Steve espouses a customer-centric approach that will resonate among PolyOne's stakeholders. With his extensive commercial and management background, he understands the critical importance of innovation, superior service, product quality and consistency, and reliable delivery."

Newlin becomes the third CEO since PolyOne's formation in 2000. "I am honored by the board's confidence in me and eager to get to work," he said. "The foundation is in place for a Company capable of sustained, profitable growth fueled by strategic sales and marketing, innovation and enhanced global positioning. I look forward to meeting with my new colleagues and hearing their ideas on how, together, we can make this Company great."

With Newlin's arrival, Patient will move into the newly created position of lead director of the board. Patient is a former chairman and CEO of The Geon Company, a predecessor of PolyOne. As non-executive chairman of PolyOne since November 2003, he agreed at the board's request to take on the duties of CEO when Thomas A. Waltermire stepped down as president, chief executive officer and a director on October 7, 2005.

"Bill has been an excellent steward of PolyOne throughout this transitional period," said Walters. "With diligence and purpose, he took charge and did an exceptional job. The entire organization owes him its heartfelt thanks. We have benefited from the presence of one proven leader, and now we move forward with another."

About Stephen D. Newlin

At Ecolab - a $4.5 billion company with 21,000 employees and operations in approximately 170 countries - Newlin led the Industrial Sector, which comprises seven divisions that provide cleaning and sanitation solutions for the food and beverage, health care, textiles, vehicle care and water care markets.

Prior to joining Ecolab, Newlin spent 23 years with Nalco Chemical, a $3 billion global specialty chemical company with 10,000 employees. Starting as a sales representative in 1980, he progressed rapidly through a series of sales management and general management positions and was named president of Nalco Pacific in 1992. In this role, he led all manufacturing, functional and commercial activities in Asia Pacific.

In 1994, Newlin embarked on a three-year assignment as president of Nalco Europe, with responsibility for all aspects of the company's businesses throughout Europe and the Middle East, including all commercial functions, research and development, manufacturing, finance and support services. In this position, he led a successful change initiative to reorganize the business around markets rather than geography. He also instilled a value- added philosophy toward customers.

Returning to the United States, Newlin was named president of Nalco's Specialty Division, then was elected president and a director of the company in 1998. He added the responsibilities of chief operating officer and vice chairman in 2000. That same year, he became chairman of Nalco Exxon Energy Chemicals, a joint venture of Nalco and Exxon Energy Chemicals. He elected to leave Nalco in 2001.

Before joining Nalco, Newlin served a brief stint as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Public Health Service, where he led the design, contracting and construction of water and wastewater systems. He holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from the South Dakota School of Mines. In 1990, he completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.

Newlin is a member of the Board of Directors of Black Hills Corporation (NYSE: BKH), a diversified energy company based in Rapid City, South Dakota. He also serves on the Board of Trustees of the South Dakota School of Mines Foundation.

Newlin currently resides with his family in Medina, Minnesota. He and his wife, Terry, have two sons: Scott, 14, and Grant, 17.

About PolyOne

PolyOne Corporation, with 2005 annual revenues of approximately $2.5 billion, is a leading global compounding and North American distribution company with operations in thermoplastic compounds, specialty polymer formulations, color and additive systems, and thermoplastic resin distribution. Headquartered in northeast Ohio, PolyOne has employees at manufacturing sites in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia, and joint ventures in North America and South America.

Forward-looking Statements

In this press release, statements that are not historical information are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. We cannot guarantee that any forward-looking statement will be realized, although we believe we have been prudent in our plans and assumptions. Forward-looking statements give current expectations or forecasts of future events and are not guarantees of future performance. They are based on management's expectations that involve a number of business risks and uncertainties, any of which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by the forward-looking statements. You can identify these statements by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historic or current facts but allude to future operating or financial performance.

Achievement of future results is subject to risks, uncertainties and inaccurate assumptions. Should known or unknown risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove inaccurate, actual results could vary materially from those anticipated, estimated or projected. Investors should bear this in mind as they consider forward-looking statements. Some specific factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, but are not limited to:

  • a failure of PolyOne to achieve its potential to be a strong, healthy, growing Company that serves and rewards its stakeholders and outperforms its peers;
  • changes in U.S., regional or world polymer consumption growth rates affecting PolyOne's markets;
  • a failure of the new CEO to motivate people to embrace and accelerate change and to deliver value;
  • a failure of PolyOne to create sustained, profitable growth fueled by strategic sales and marketing, innovation and enhanced global positioning; and
  • other factors affecting our business beyond our control, including, without limitation, changes in the general economy, the cost of raw materials, interest rates and the rate of inflation.

You are advised to consult our reports on Form 10-Q, 8-K and 10-K provided to the Securities and Exchange Commission for additional risk factors that could affect PolyOne's performance. You should understand that it is not possible to predict or identify all risk factors. Consequently, you should not consider any list to be a complete set of all potential risks or uncertainties.

We undertake no obligation to publicly update forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Source: PolyOne

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