November 12, 2012
Credit: Credit: Lockheed Martin
Lockheed Martin on Monday said Pentagon officials had underscored their support for Marillyn Hewson, named to take over as chief executive in January after an ethics scandal, and urged the company to stay focused on its flagship program the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
Current Chief Executive Bob Stevens, who will stay on as executive chairman when he retires at the end of the year, told analysts that the Defense Department was understanding about the management changes, but also reiterated the importance of keeping such programs such as the F-35 fighter on track.
Hewson and Stevens spoke with analysts on Monday morning in an effort to reassure investors that the company’s leadership changes would not alter its focus on cutting costs, delivering programs and expanding international sales.
Lockheed shares were trading slightly lower on Monday morning dropping 44 cents to trade at $89.54.
Stevens said Lockheed informed the Pentagon after the close of the stock market that its president and chief operating officer, Chris Kubasik, had been forced out after admitting to an inappropriate personal relationship.
Kubasik had been set to replace Stevens as chief executive officer in January. The news on Kubasik emerged hours after CIA Director David Petraeus resigned after admitting to an extramarital affair.
“The initial response has been an understanding of the situation that we faced here and an understanding of the actions that we’ve taken and a full measure of support for Marillyn in her new position,” Stevens said on Monday.
He said officials also told the company: “Don’t lose focus on the commitments that you’ve made on the F35 specifically and on other programs.”