J.D. Edwards Taps New Chief


J.D. Edwards on Thursday said good-bye to its founder and longtime CEO C. Edward McVaney, who is retiring after nearly 40 years in the IT industry, and welcomed its new president and CEO, Robert M. Dutkowsky.

McVaney founded the ERP software company in 1977 along with Jack Thompson and Dan Gregory; J.D. Edwards bears the first names of the three founders as its moniker. McVaney piloted the company from there, building J.D. Edwards into a billion-dollar ERP franchise.

"J.D. Edwards has maintained a leadership position in the software industry by focusing on customers, solutions and customer service," McVaney said in a statement Thursday. "I am confident that Bob will build on J.D. Edwards' core values, market focus, and product excellence to lead the Company forward into a bright future."

Dutkowsky, 47, was formerly the president of Teradyne's Assembly Test Division and prior to that, chairman and CEO of GenRad, which was acquired by Teradyne in October. He also held various positions at IBM, a strong J.D. Edwards partner, during a 20-year tenure at the company.

Dutkowsky takes the helm of J.D. Edwards at a pivotal time. Like many software vendors, J.D. Edwards struggled earlier this year, laying off 400 employees and witnessing a drop in license revenue. After an internal restructuring and cost-saving initiative last summer, the company has now started to implement external changes by reducing the number of partnerships in an effort to dump unproductive partners and build a more efficient channel business.

J.D. Edwards has also been working furiously to get a host of new products ingrained in the marketplace. OneWorld Xe, the company's flagship software suite for enterprise application integration and collaboration, was revamped a year ago with J.D. Edwards' XPI (extended process integration) technology. J.D. Edwards also jumped into the CRM market in full force, acquiring CRM software maker YOUcentric recently and releasing its CRM 1.1 product last month. Advanced Planning 4.0, the newest version of the company's supply chain suite, was also released last month.

"J.D. Edwards is uniquely well positioned and well equipped for industry leadership," Dutkowsky said in a statement Thursday. "In terms of management depth, customer commitment, market focus and product power, I can't think of another company in our industry that's in a better position. It's an exciting company, and an exciting time to be coming aboard."

Dutkowsky will also replace McVaney as chairman when the board has its annual meeting in March. J.D. Edwards' stock was up slightly since the leadership change was announced and is currently priced at approximately $16.35.