From Acquired To Leading the Acquirer: Stewart McCutcheon’s Journey At Ecolab
Ecolab ECL -0.05% is an example of a business-to-business leader that you may not know. They are a $15 billion colossus that provides cleaning and sanitizing products and programs, as well as pest elimination, equipment maintenance and repair services primarily to customers in the food service, food and beverage processing, hospitality, healthcare, government, and education, retail, textile care, commercial facilities management and vehicle wash sectors. It has been one of the best performing companies in the US stock market over the past decade.
Roughly three years ago, the company acquired Nalco, a leader in water treatment company. Nalco’s Chief Information & Productivity Officer was Stewart McCutcheon. McCutcheon has been the COO and CEO of a technology firm prior to joining Nalco, and as a result, he has brought an unusually broad perspective to the CIO role. The value he had created from his “CIO-plus” position at Nalco was one of the chief reasons he was one of the Nalco leaders to take a “chief” role at Ecolab despite coming from the acquired entity.
Even in the early days of the integration, McCutcheon and his team focused on being a source of innovation to the company becoming involved in Ecolab’s efforts in the Internet of Things, for example, as he details in my interview with him.
(To listen to an unabridged audio version of this interview please visit this link. This is the 20th interview in the CIO’s First 100 Days series. To read past interviews in the series with the CIOs of companies like Intel INTC +1.83%, Time Warner TWX +1.33%, General Electric GE +0.04%, AmerisourceBergen ABC +1.46%, and CVS Caremark among others, please visit this link. To read future interviews in the series, please click the “Follow” link above.)