CommScope appoints new president and CEO

Oct. 2, 2020
Charles Treadway has been appointed CommScope's president and CEO; Eddie Edwards to step down.

CommScope Holding Company, Inc. (NASDAQ: COMM), a global specialist in connectivity products for communications networks, on Oct. 1 announced that Eddie Edwards, president and chief executive officer, has stepped down after 15 years of service to the company. Succeeding Mr. Edwards is Charles “Chuck” Treadway, who has been appointed as president, CEO and a member of the CommScope board of directors. The leadership transition is the result of the company’s ongoing succession planning program led by its board of directors, said a press announcement.

With experience successfully growing multiple global businesses in a range of industries, Mr. Treadway brings to CommScope significant strategic, operational and go-to-market expertise. He has served 17 of the last 20 years as CEO of global businesses located in the U.S., China, and Latin America. In each of his CEO assignments, Treadway led efforts that generated highly profitable, above-market growth. Most recently, he served as CEO of Accudyne Industries, where he drove significant revenue growth and margin expansion with strategic focus, product innovation, improved sales and marketing efforts, and disciplined execution.

Treadway most recently served as CEO of Accudyne Industries from 2016 to 2020. Prior to his role at Accudyne Industries, he held various leadership positions at Thomas & Betts, including president and CEO from 2012 to 2016, president and chief operating officer from 2011 to 2012 and group president of the company's Electrical unit from 2009 to 2011. He previously served in several management and executive positions at Schneider Electric S.A., Prettl International, Inc. and Yale Security, Inc. Treadway earned his Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Louisiana-Lafayette and Clemson University, respectively, and a M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

“I’m excited to join CommScope, a company with a legacy of innovation and industry leadership,” said Treadway. “I have great respect for all that CommScope has accomplished throughout its rich history, and for the team’s relentless focus on delivering for customers while aggressively managing its cost structure during these recent challenging times. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of reliable network connectivity, and the need for products and services that will continue to push the boundaries of reliability, efficiency and collaboration for customers around the world. I look forward to working alongside the entire CommScope team to drive growth, operational excellence, and value for all our stakeholders.”

Edwards commented, “It has been my great privilege to serve as CommScope’s CEO and to work with such an incredibly talented team to advance our mission of serving customers in developing the most advanced networks in the world. As a team, we have transformed the company from a structured cable and connectivity business to an industry-leading provider in virtually all aspects of telecommunications and broadband networks. I expect the company will continue to advance under Chuck’s leadership, and I look forward to the company’s future successes.”

The company also announced that Frank M. Drendel, in recognition of his unique status and distinguished service to CommScope, has been named Chairman Emeritus. Mr. Drendel founded CommScope in 1976 and has served continuously as its CEO and/or chairman of the board since. In those capacities, the company notes how Drendel has advanced the evolution of CommScope from a small coaxial cable business "established at his kitchen table" into the diversified, global communications infrastructure business that it is today.

Drendel will remain on the the company's board and is now succeeded as chairman by Bud Watts. Mr. Watts has a long history of service to CommScope, most recently as the board’s Lead Independent Director. Watts will work with Treadway and the management team on strategic, corporate development and capital structure matters. Considering his active engagement, Watts will now become an employee of the company. As a result, the independent directors on the CommScope board elected Timothy T. Yates as the new Lead Independent Director.

“We are pleased to welcome Chuck to CommScope,” commented Watts. “Chuck is a tested and proven leader who brings extensive global business experience and strong strategic, operational, and go-to-market acumen to CommScope. This is a critical time in the company’s history. Never has the need for advanced, reliable network infrastructure been more vital to consumers and businesses, nor offered CommScope greater potential opportunities for growth. Chuck has a growth mindset and an impressive record of generating above-market revenue performance and market share gains. We believe Chuck is uniquely qualified to lead CommScope in fulfilling its full strategic potential. The board and I look forward to working actively with Chuck to help CommScope grow, prosper, and create significant value for our customers, shareholders, employees, and partners.”

Watts continued, “On behalf of the board and entire management team, I want to sincerely thank Eddie for his many years of dedicated service to CommScope. As CEO over the last decade, he has reshaped the company’s portfolio, enhanced our reach into growing markets, and driven the introduction of industry-leading technologies that position the company squarely at the center of the 5G revolution. Eddie’s leadership has been instrumental in building the strong foundation from which CommScope can forge ahead, and his impact on the company will be felt for many years to come. We will all miss him. We wish Eddie the best as he moves into his retirement years and enjoys the well-deserved opportunity to spend more time with his growing family.”

Drendel said, “Since founding CommScope nearly 45 years ago, we have worked as a team to continuously adapt to the dynamic communications landscape while staying true to our purpose, vision and values. Eddie has played a significant role at CommScope, and we are grateful for his dedication and guidance over the years. Our successes are a testament to his leadership, the resilience of our business, and our relentless commitment to putting the customer first each step of the way. I’ve seen this business and industry evolve over the last few decades, and I’m confident that under Chuck’s leadership, the best is yet to come.”

CommScope also on Oct. 1 reaffirmed its outlook for the third quarter of 2020, originally provided on August 6, 2020. The company expects third quarter sales and non-GAAP adjusted EBITDA to improve modestly compared to the second quarter.

Further, in connection with Treadway’s appointment as president and CEO of CommScope, the compensation committee of the CommScope board of directors granted to Treadway, effective Oct. 1, 500,000 restricted stock units, which will vest in equal annual installments on the first three anniversaries of the grant date subject to Treadway’s continued service with CommScope, and 1,100,000 performance share units that may be earned based upon the achievement of certain hurdles relating to CommScope’s stock price, and his continued service with CommScope, over a four-year period.

The restricted stock units and performance share units were negotiated and approved as an inducement to Mr. Treadway’s entering into employment with CommScope in accordance with NASDAQ Listing Rule 5635(c)(4).

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