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Ashland hires William Wulfsohn as CEO
Nov '14
Ashland Inc, a manufacturer of specialty chemical solutions, said it has hired William Wulfsohn as its new CEO, who replaces James O'Brien, who retires at the end of December.

Wulfsohn, 52, brings nearly 30 years of world-class chemicals and industrial manufacturing experience to his new role with Ashland.

Since 2010, he has served as president and CEO of Carpenter Technology, a global leader in the development, manufacture and distribution of cast/wrought and powder metal stainless steels and specialty alloys.

Wulfsohn has led Carpenter's senior management team through a major transformation, revitalizing the company's capabilities and delivering outstanding results.

Under his leadership, Carpenter constructed a highly advanced super alloy facility; expanded its scope of geographic operations; introduced new differential technology; and successfully integrated multiple accretive acquisitions.

From fiscal 2010 through fiscal 2014, Carpenter Technology's annual sales grew 93 percent; operating margin improved from 5 percent to 13 percent, and fully diluted earnings per share increased from $0.04 to $2.47.

In addition, adjusted EBITDA nearly tripled, from $132 million in 2010 to $382 million in 2014. The Ashland board was attracted by Wulfsohn's ability to deliver strong financial results through his focus on customer satisfaction, innovation and operational excellence.

Wulfsohn has enjoyed a long, proven career. After working for McKinsey & Co., he focused his career on specialty materials with leading companies such as Honeywell International, PPG Industries and Carpenter Technology.

During his three years at Honeywell, he helped lead the nylon business through a strategic redesign. In 2003, he joined PPG and a year later was named managing director of PPG Europe, based in Paris.

In 2006, Wulfsohn was promoted to senior vice president, industrial coatings, leading a $4 billion business segment and reporting to PPG's chairman and CEO.

He has recently served on the board of directors of PolyOne, a provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions.

Wulfsohn earned a chemical engineering degree from the University of Michigan and received an MBA from Harvard Business School. (AR)

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