David L. Calhoun, previously Vice Chairman of General Electric Company (GE), was announced today as the new Chairman and CEO of VNU, based in New York. He succeeds interim CEO Rob Ruijter, who will revert to concentrating on his role as CFO.
Calhoun was also President and CEO of GE Infrastructure, where he was responsible for GEís Aviation, Energy, Oil and Gas, Transportation and Water units, businesses with combined revenues of $47bn expected in 2006 and over 85,000 employees.
Calhoun joined GE in 1979 on graduating from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute. He completed the groupís Financial Management Program, moved to the Corporate Audit staff and became Manager of Programs and Planning in 1986. He served as Manager of Marketing for the Americas at GE Plastics, to which company he returned in 1994 as President for the Pacific region. In between he was named VP of GE Corporate Audit Staff, and an officer of the company; and served as President and CEO of GE Employers Reinsurance Company, GE Lighting, and GE Transportation Systems.
In 2000, he was appointed President and CEO of GE Aircraft Engines, and in 2003 President and CEO of GE Transportation. He became a Vice Chairman of GE in 2005, overseeing the newly formed Infrastructure group, the largest of GEís six business segments.
In a statement, the Supervisory Board said Calhoun had built Ďa world-class record of successí in his 27+ years at GE. ĎHe is superbly qualified to take VNU to the next level of growth and performance, as the company works efficiently and cohesively to enhance the value of its services, and pursues its many exciting strategic opportunities in the years ahead.í
Calhoun himself comments: ĎI am delighted to join VNU and Iím impressed by the strength of its franchises and the depth of its capabilities in each of its marketing information, media information, business publications and trade show units... With growing demand for information and insights that help businesses understand consumers and markets in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world, VNUís prospects have never been stronger.í
VNU is online at www.vnu.com