Interesting GleaningsIt's Sunday. I read some magazines today. In the process I learned a few things:
- Proctor & Gamble just paid Gillette CEO Jim Kilts $164 million as part of a deal to go away quietly in the wake of a merger between the two companies. On a different page in the same issue of Business Week there was also a report that the ousted CEO of Morgan Stanley is being paid $32 million to cover the 15 weeks - that's weeks, not years - he spent toiling away in his deluxe cubicle. That works out to a whopping $53,000 per hour if you assume he put in a 40-hour week. I'm guessing he probably didn't or he would still have a job. Both payoffs were made to encourage "management stability".
What would they pay to destabilize a place? Obviously, I'm in the wrong line of business.
- My former employer, oft-sued and beaten Visa USA, recently came up with a replacement for outgoing CEO Carl Pascarella. Big Carl announced he was retiring weeks after kicking off a "spin-back after a spin-off "of Inovant, Visa's technology subsidiary. (Insert joke about rats deserting a sinking ship here.)
John Coghlan a former Charles Schwab exec took the job because, "I always wanted to be a CEO". That seems like a swell reason to me. The eminently qualified Coghlan apparently has no payment card experience other than as a cardholder. However, Biz Week reports that he did, "stress his experience as a founder of San Francisco Grocery Express, a now-defunct delivery business that accepted Visa cards."
Well, that ought to set Visa up for the formidable legal and economic challenges that lay ahead - a guy who had the same stupid idea as Webvan, except less-successful.
Visa insiders will be pleased to hear that Coghlan's mug shot in Biz Week shows the same -spray-on tan and ill-fitting toupe that Carl had. Apparently these are passed down as administrations change, much like the Mace of State in the British Empire. No word on whether he had to stand on a box to be seen during the interview.
- Canadian newsmag Maclean's reports that women appear 10 years younger to men if the scent of grapefuit is in the air. No word on what makes men look better to women, but I'm guessing from the behavior of Anna Nicole Smith that it might be the smell of money.
- Crimes involving guns are rare in our neighbor to the north and I think I've found the reason why. A 46-year old Alberta man, who ambushed and killed four RCMP officers, was found to be wearing two pairs of pants, five layers of shirts and jackets, and black socks over his boots when he died. For Chrissakes, no wonder he couldn't shoot. He must have moved like the Michelin man and the sweat from all those layers blinded him.
- The answer to the Chrysler ad's question, "That thing got a Hemi?", is apparently yes. Hemi-powered snowblowers and paper-shredders were among the entries in a recent Chrysler contest, but the winner was an enormous Hemi-powered Big Wheel. The trike sported enough power to tow a building and had a custom four-foot big wheel and wheelie bars borrowed from a dragster to keep it from tipping over when it accelerated.
I'm thinking the guy who won is compensating just a little, teeny, tiny, bit too much about shortfalls in other areas. If you know what I mean.
Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Sunday, July 17, 2005