Tellabs Appoints Robert Pullen CEO
Tellabs Inc. (Nasdaq: TLAB; Frankfurt: BTLA) today announced that 23-year company veteran Robert W. Pullen will take over as CEO and president of the company on March 1.
Light Reading understands that the company was very recently down to a short list of two internal and two external candidates. With today's announcement, it seems that Tellabs has decided to fill the position from within the company.
Pullen, 45, joined Tellabs in 1985 as an electrical engineer. His most recent position was vice president and general manager of global services, where he increased services revenues by 22 percent in 2007, according to his biography. Before that, he was senior vice president of North American sales from 2002 to October 2005. (See Tellabs Launches Services.)
The company said it was looking for a CEO in November 2007 when current president and CEO Krish Prabhu announced his intention to resign by March 1. (See Tellabs CEO Quits and Prabhu Quits as Tellabs CEO .)
During the last CEO search in 2004, analysts had pointed to Pullen, then senior VP of North American sales, as being among several internal executives that could take the top job. (See Nulty Leaving Tellabs.)
Tellabs had a disappointing financial year in 2007 and is in the midst of a cost-cutting campaign designed to reduce costs by $100 million by the end of 2008. The plan includes the reduction of 225 jobs, which is in addition to 125 that were slashed during a September restructuring. (See Tellabs Cuts Continue, Tellabs Cuts Run Deep(er), Tellabs Trims in Access, Tellabs Earnings Drop on Access, and Tellabs Trips Over Wireless.)
In addition, the company has been the subject of persistent M&A speculation over the last year. (See Tellabs: Not for Sale, Tellabs M&A Redux, Tellabs Mum on M&A Talks, Is Nokia Siemens Tailing Tellabs?, and Who's Going to Buy Tellabs?)
— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Light Reading