BearingPoint names new CEO

Date: 04-12-2007
Source: Wall Street Journal

BearingPoint Inc.'s shares fell as it named a new chief executive and reported a wider-than-expected third-quarter net loss.

President and Chief Operating Officer Ed Harbach was appointed CEO to succeed Harry L. You. The McLean, Va., technology consulting firm said Mr. You, CEO since 2005, was leaving to pursue other opportunities. Mr. You, 48 years old and a former chief financial officer at Oracle Corp., wasn't available to comment.

Mr. Harbach, 53, has been president and operating chief since January. He previously served as a managing partner and member of the leadership team at Accenture Ltd. BearingPoint wouldn't comment on plans for a successor as operating chief.

Chairman Roderick McGeary said the appointment reflects the board's decision to create value "by intensifying our focus on operations -- and leveraging the full scale and scope of our global business, including continuing to own and operate our European practice as an important part of our consolidated business."

The company yesterday reported a third-quarter net loss of $68 million, or 32 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier net loss of $29.6 million, or 14 cents a share. Revenue rose 2.2% to $861.9 million from $843.2 million. The mean estimates of analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were for a loss of 11 cents a share on revenue of $859 million.

In filing its third-quarter results with the Securities and Exchange Commission, BearingPoint is now current on its reports. The company didn't file its 2006 annual report until late June because of significant delays in completing its consolidated financial statements for the year. Its first-quarter report was filed in September, followed a month later by its second-quarter filing.

BearingPoint shares fell 71 cents, or 19%, to $2.94 at 4 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading.

"Weak third-quarter results, operating and financial metrics, combined with the sudden departure of the company's CEO, confirm our cautious view on the company, reflecting a competitively weak position, an inflated cost base as well as poor free cash flows and returns," Cowen & Co. said.

Accounting firm KPMG LLP spun off BearingPoint's predecessor, KPMG Consulting Inc., in 2001. The company changed its name to BearingPoint the next year.