GE CEO Immelt stepping down, Flannery to take over role

Jeff Immelt

As senior vice president of GE's corporate business development, he oversaw the acquisition of Alstom and partook in the sale of GE Appliances, Synchrony Financial initial public offering and contraction of GE Capital.

The move comes as GE goes through some major changes, including relocating its global headquarters from Fairfield, CT, to Boston, and attempting to transform its business and its reputation into more of a software-focused industrial manufacturer. Early in his GE career he worked on corporate restructurings.

Immelt, 61, will remain as chairman through the end of the year, when he will retire.

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John Flannery, the head of GE's health care division, will take over in August.

Flannery, 55, joined GE Capital in 1987. The unit, which makes imaging and diagnostic equipment, has been expanding into life sciences.

Jeff Immelt, who took over from Jack Welch in 2001, has been credited with steering the company through the financial crisis, which almost toppled the maker of jet engines, wind turbines and locomotives.

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Immelt, 61, became the company's CEO in 2000, replacing MA native Jack Welch. According to his company bio, he also bolstered the unit's digital and technological capabilities, particularly through the launch of Sustainable Healthcare Solutions, to reinforce the company as a leader in industry technology. GE Healthcare's revenue rose to $18.29 billion in 2016, back to levels it sustained in the beginning of the decade, while increasing operating profit. The company's shares had been down more than 11% so far this year, and the stock was the second-worst performer on the Dow Jones Industrial Average of 30 stocks, behind Verizon.

"Jeff has positioned the company incredibly well for the future, "USA Today reported citing a statement of Jack Brennan, lead independent director on GE's board". "He executed a massive portfolio transformation and navigated the company through economic cycles and business disruptions".

GE shares spiked as much as 5.5 percent in Monday futures trading on the company's announcement.

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