Union Carbide Corp. on Tuesday reorganized its top management, naming two co-presidents to oversee two new divisions of the giant chemicals corporation and establishing a new position of vice chairman.
Alec Flamm, the current president and chief operating officer, has been named vice chairman with responsibility for corporate strategic planning, acquisitions and divestitures, Chairman Warren M. Anderson said in a statement.
Replacing Flamm and holding the concentration of management authority as co-presidents will be Robert D. Kennedy and Heinn F. Tomfohrde III. Both have also been elected directors of the Danbury, Conn.-based company.
Tomfohrde, an executive vice president since 1983, will head the newly formed consumer, industrial products and services group. Kennedy, who was named an executive vice president in 1982, will oversee a new plastics and chemicals group.
The remaining three executive vice presidents are John H. Field, James M. Rehfield and Elio E. Tarika, all of whom are expected to report to Flamm on “special assignment.”
“The two groups being formed require distinct management philosophies and styles,” Anderson said in the statement.
“The benefits of this reorganization, and of the new management structure also being implemented, include simplification of operating relationships, increased marketplace coordination, streamlining of management and cost reduction.”
A newspaper in Danbury reported that Union Carbide, as part of a cost-cutting effort, is expected to offer its employees an early retirement program aimed at reducing its worldwide employment by about 15%. Carbide employs about 2,900 people at its corporate headquarters, about 48,400 in its domestic operations and an additional 46,700 people worldwide.
The management reorganization follows steps taken last week by Carbide’s board of directors to amend corporate bylaws in order to make a hostile takeover more difficult and less lucrative for any potential buyer.
The company recently has been rumored on Wall Street to be the possible takeover target of several large investors, including Mesa Petroleum Co., whose chairman, T. Boone Pickens Jr., has made a number of hostile bids for oil companies.