Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

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Re: Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

Postby BR&P » Sat Dec 23, 2017 9:59 pm

Foote may be wearing the title, but the board calls the shots. The board put EHH in with a good idea of what they wanted done, and while Foote may not BE Harrison, he still has to keep those guys happy. Word is that Foote is probably an intermediate at that position until a permanent replacement can be found. I don't look for him to make any radical reversals of the course Harrison has set.
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Re: Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

Postby tree68 » Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:50 am

I've been of the impression that EHH wasn't calling the shots - he was only parroting what his "handlers" wanted.

I'm not so sure the board had so much to do with what EHH did - they may have hired him, but there was a lot involved with that including intimations of a somewhat hostile takeover. The board may be breathing a quiet sigh of relief.

The question then becomes how much Foote is willing to pass through from Mantle Ridge.
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Re: Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

Postby BR&P » Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:58 am

There was some resistance to Harrison coming in, but those investor shareholders had enough clout to get board support for putting him in the spot. Much more recently (a month ago, maybe?) 3 high level executives at CSX went to the board with serious objections to the course Harrison was taking, and the damage they felt it was doing. The board listened, then expressed confidence with the actions EHH was taking. The 3 execs then resigned.

Harrison may have been the face of the problem, but he was NOT just some rogue who stormed in all by himself and started swinging an ax. He was put in by factions who felt that there was money to be made by the tactics he has used in the past. While the point man may be gone, that faction has just as many board seats as it did before, and is not magically going to reverse course just because of his passing. They will find someone else who they feel can finish what EHH started.
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Re: Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

Postby tree68 » Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:33 pm

BR&P wrote:They will find someone else who they feel can finish what they started.

Fixed that for ya.
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Re: Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

Postby BR&P » Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:37 pm

tree68 wrote:Fixed that for ya.


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Re: Hunter Harrison Has Reached the End of the Line

Postby Matt Langworthy » Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:58 pm

BR&P wrote:Foote may be wearing the title, but the board calls the shots. The board put EHH in with a good idea of what they wanted done, and while Foote may not BE Harrison, he still has to keep those guys happy. Word is that Foote is probably an intermediate at that position until a permanent replacement can be found. I don't look for him to make any radical reversals of the course Harrison has set.


Foote was a lackey anyway. EHH tended to hire yes men (and women) as much as possible.

Your point about the board is quite apt. EHH's predecessor Michael Ward was already implementing some of the changes at CSX e.g. fewer and longer drag freights were already replacing hot shot trains nearly 2 years ago. However, Ward did so at a relaxed pace that caused little disruption to shippers or employees. The majority of shareholders chose EHH over Ward because EHH promised to make the changes happen more quickly... and ruthlessly. There has been no talk about going back to Ward's slower (and more customer friendly) style of changing CSX, because the majority of shareholders want bigger profits now, not next year or even next quarter. EHH delivered what they wanted, and so will Foote or whoever actually runs the RR. Love it or hate it, the board is the dark future power behind the curtain for at least the next few years.
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