Dentsply Sirona Inc. announced the resignation of three top executives on Monday, a move that sent the dental-products manufacturer’s stock price tumbling.
The company’s board accepted resignations from executive chairman Bret W. Wise, CEO and director Jeffrey T. Slovin, and COO Christopher T. Clark.
In turn, Mark A. Thierer was named interim CEO, Bob Size was appointed interim president and COO, and Eric K. Brandt was elected as non-executive chairman of the board.
“Dentsply Sirona’s Board of directors strongly believes that the company is well-positioned to achieve its business objectives and deliver value for its shareholders, and that new leadership is critical to achieving success,” Brandt said.
In a statement, officials with York-based Dentsply Sirona added only that the moves were “intended to better position the company to achieve its potential,” and that they “were not related to any issues or disagreements regarding the company’s financial disclosures, accounting policies and practices.”
The company was created in 2016 by a merger of York-based Dentsply International and New York-based Sirona Dental Systems Inc., forming a $13.3 billion firm reputed to be the world’s largest dental manufacturer of its type.
Dentsply Sirona stock (NASDAQ: XRAY), which had closed at $59.81 on Friday, dropped sharply Monday morning, bottoming out at $56.13 before rebounding slightly. Its price stood at $56.53 at mid-afternoon on Monday.
The company’s board also:
• Approved an amendment to corporate by-laws eliminating some provisions adopted as part of the merger, including supermajority voting requirements for corporate governance and executive leadership changes.
• Removed the position of lead independent director.
• Reduced the board from 11 to nine directors.
The board also has initiated a search process to identify a permanent CEO and COO.
Interim CEO Thierer previously served as chairman of the board and CEO of Catamaran, which was one of the nation’s largest pharmacy benefit management companies until it merged with OptumRx in 2015.
Size served as senior vice president of Dentsply Sirona Inc. from January 2007 through June 2017, while Brandt has served as a director since 2004.