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Caterpillar appoint new CEO

CATERPILLAR have announced the appointment of Doug Oberhelman as the next chief executive officer of the company, with effect from 1 July 2010. Mr Oberhelman, who will also become a member of the Caterpillar board of directors, succeeds Jim Owen who is retiring after more than 38 years with the company. Mr Owens will remain as chairman of the board until 31 October 2010, when Mr Oberhelman will take over as new chairman.

Since his appointment as chairman and CEO in 2004, Mr Owens has successfully guided Caterpillar through unprecedented growth from 2005 to 2008, followed by the global economic recession of 2009. During his tenure, employee safety and engagement has improved significantly. He also introduced the company’s Vision 2020 strategy and championed key capacity expansion projects, as well as mergers and acquisitions.

‘One of the great strengths of Caterpillar is the depth of highly experienced executives who have risen within the company’s ranks, allowing for a smooth transition of leadership which supports the company’s long-term strategy and year-to-year planning process,’ said W. Frank Blount, presiding director and chairman of the Governance Committee of Caterpillar’s board of directors.

‘Jim Owens has provided outstanding leadership for Caterpillar over the last six-plus years, positioning the company for continued growth and leadership in the industries it serves. I am confident Doug Oberhelman’s leadership, his deep focus in all aspects of the company’s business and his acute focus on helping customers succeed will again result in Caterpillar’s performance rising to new levels of excellence.’

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