Avnet Elevates Hamada to CEO Position
March 21, 2011 Timothy Prickett Morgan
Master IT and electronic components distributor Avnet has promoted an insider to take over the day-to-day running of the company.
Roy Vallee, who is currently Avnet’s chief executive officer and chairman, will step away from the CEO position on July 4, yielding it to long-time Avnet insider Rick Hamada, who is currently the company’s president and chief operating officer. Vallee is sticking around to be executive chairman, and Hamada has been appointed to the Avnet board of directors.
Avnet said that the move was the culmination of a multi-year CEO succession plan. It is not clear if the company considered hiring an outsider for the job, but with Avnet and rival Arrow Electronics being pretty much the two only companies that do what they do on the scale that they do it, the options were to pick someone from inside Avnet, steal someone away from Arrow, or get a newbie who was a CEO but who could not have known the IT and electronics distribution business as well as an insider would.
Vallee has been at Avnet for 34 years and has been chairman and CEO for 13 of those years; the company quadrupled its revenues in that time, hitting $19.2 billion in sales in its fiscal 2010 ended last July. Hamada has been chief operating officer at the company for the past five years and was obviously being groomed for the CEO position. There is very little chance that Avnet will quadruple in size in that time unless it moves into other distribution businesses, so Hamada is going to have to come up with some new tricks to grow the company.
Hamada joined Avnet in 1983 and has held a number of different executive positions in sales, marketing, and business development, including a run as president of its Technology Solutions IT distribution business from 2002 through 2006.