An American Printer Commentary
By Andy & Julie Plata
Co-CEOs, the OutputLinks Communications Group
On May 17, Xerox’s Board Chairman replaced five Board members (plus himself) with new faces. The new Board then appointed John Visentin to replace Jeff Jacobson as CEO.
In most cases when a CEO is fired they are eligible for a severance package equal to a few years pay and benefits. However, we understand that Jeff Jacobson chose to tender his resignation rather than waiting to be fired.
What Jacobson Gave up
Had Jacobson waited to be fired he would have been eligible for a severance package estimated to be $18,000,000! However, Jeff chose to give up that multi-million-dollar package when he resigned.
What’s in it for Jeff?
What Jacobson received in return was Carl Icahn and Xerox’s promise to provide him immunity from civil lawsuits over his conduct in Fujifilm’s attempted takeover of Xerox.
Judge Barry Ostrager of the New York State Supreme Court stated April 27 there was probable cause for Xerox shareholders to sue Jacobson for “bad faith” related to his merger negotiations with Fujifilm.
In fact, concerns about potential personal liability led some of the Board Members to also hire attorneys. We had heard that the fired Board members were also expecting a severance package, but as of today, we are not aware if those payments were also canceled in exchange for immunity.
Passing up an $18 million payout leads one to wonder about how extensive Jeff Jacobson thought his potential liability was for his actions since December 2017. We may learn more on that topic as the Xerox saga continues to unfold over the coming weeks and months.
Thanks for reading. Your thoughts and comments on this topic are appreciated.
Stay tuned for our continuing Commentary on the changing Xerox environment and their effect on Xerox's clients, employees, dealers, partners, stockholders and the entire print industry.