As CFO, Jeff Bornstein has been instrumental in General Electric’s effort to focus on its industrial core and software. But he won’t be around to assist new CEO John Flannery in that endeavor.
GE announced Friday that Bornstein is leaving the conglomerate after 28 years of service and will be replaced by Jamie Miller, currently CEO of GE Transportation.
Bornstein was once considered a contender to succeed former chief executive Jeffrey Immelt. When Flannery was chosen to replace Immelt, GE said he and Bornstein would work closely together and granted the finance chief a special retention package.
“As John evaluates the strategy for GE and puts his leadership team in place, he and I have concluded that this is the right time to bring in a new CFO with a fresh perspective to guide GE’s ongoing efforts to reduce costs, drive growth, improve our performance, and enhance shareholder value,” Bornstein said in a news release.
Miller will take over as CFO starting Nov. 1, with Bornstein, who is also a GE vice chair, leaving Dec. 31.
Flannery is under pressure from investors to cut costs and according to Reuters, Bornstein had repeatedly missed cash-flow targets as CFO.
“Flannery wants to tell people that he is going to hold people accountable,” Scott Davis, an analyst at Melius Research in New York, wrote in a client note on Friday. “GE is in crisis mode and needs to clean house as fast as possible, get the right people in key jobs, and move forward.”
Miller joined GE in 2008 as vice president, controller and chief accounting officer, and also held the role of chief information officer, where she led the global information technology strategy, services and operations. She previously worked at Anthem and as a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
“Jamie’s deep experience in finance, digital technology, and business operations make her the right person for this role as GE continues to transform into a digital industrial company,” Flannery said. “We’ve relied on her leadership to manage the [transportation] business through a tough cycle, and she has consistently delivered for our customers, shareholders and employees.”