By Peter High, published on Forbes
Melanie Kalmar already had one of the most complex jobs in IT, and that was before the recent addition of Corporate VP and Chief Digital Officer to her Chief Information Officer title. In a previous interview, Kalmar shared insight into Dow Services Business (DSB), a business she established and runs which provides services to Dow’s joint ventures, divestiture activities, and affiliates (tenants). The value that DSB provides is clear when one considers the extent of Dow’s merger, acquisition, and divestiture (MA&D) activities: the Dow-DuPont merger was the largest ever in the chemical industry, and their MA&D team evaluates and executes between 30 to 50 transactions annually. To support the MA&D strategy from an IT perspective, Kalmar led the development of a unique architecture and “tenant” platform that allows Dow to provide varied business services and enabling technologies to joint ventures or divested entities while leveraging core capabilities.
Asked about the Kalmar’s contribution and the tenant capability, Dow Chemical President and COO Jim Fitterling – who will become CEO of Dow in the first quarter of 2018 – noted, “The unique architecture and tenant capability that our IT experts developed has allowed us to be proactive and extremely agile during business transitions. This greatly benefits our customers and stakeholders, while accelerating our growth and allowing us to keep doing what we do best – creating solutions to help solve global challenges.” The capability has delivered over $45MM in savings since being implemented, and Fitterling notes that to date, it has “Delivered hundreds of millions of bottom line impact [through cost savings and revenue lift] via speed to deal implementation, time value of money, better terms of the deals and operationalizing the new entities.”
Peter High: Please describe the innovative idea that you and your team in IT pursued.
Kalmar: Our company is very active with MA&D activities. The DowDuPont merger transaction was the largest ever in the chemical industry – and one of the world’s largest mergers of equals. The intent is to bring together the complementary portfolios of Dow and DuPont and then to create three leading companies that will drive innovation in their respective industries.
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