Xylem CEO Decker to depart company

Xylem Inc. announced this week that after a distinguished decade leading the company, President and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Decker plans to retire as CEO at the end of 2023. Chief Financial Officer Sandra Rowland will also be departing the company to pursue new and different opportunities.

Decker will be succeeded by Matthew Pine, Xylem’s chief operating officer, effective Jan. 1, 2024. At that time, Decker will retire from Xylem’s Board and Pine will join as a director. The company said the move will happen in accordance with the company’s long-term succession planning process, and that Decker and Pine will work closely ensure a smooth transition.

Xylem has also appointed William Grogan, formerly chief financial officer of IDEX Corporation, to senior vice president and chief financial officer, effective Oct. 1, 2023, to succeed Rowland. Both Decker and Rowland will remain employed through March 2024 to serve as advisors and support the transitions.

Robert Friel, Chair of Xylem’s Board, commented, “With Patrick’s decision to retire, we have the privilege of making these executive appointments as Xylem’s strength, performance and momentum continue to rise. The Board unanimously agrees that Matthew is the right leader to drive the next chapter of value creation at Xylem. Matthew brings a strategic, global mindset and deep operational capability, and we look forward to his continued leadership in advancing the Company’s impact around the world.”

Friel continued, “The Board is very grateful for Patrick’s leadership over nearly ten years, a period during which Xylem transformed into a global market leader with expanded scale and international presence, the water industry’s most advanced portfolio of solutions, and an outstanding record of value creation – delivering more than 300% total return to shareholders. Under Patrick’s visionary and passionate leadership, he and the team have fortified Xylem’s competitive advantages and put the Company on a path of continuing growth. Xylem’s future is very bright and we thank Patrick for his service.”

Patrick Decker commented, “It has been a tremendous honor to serve as CEO for nearly a decade. I am so proud of the impact the Xylem team has had helping our customers and communities become more water-secure and more sustainable. Having worked side-by-side with Matthew for the past several years, I have full confidence he will continue Xylem’s trajectory of growth and accelerate our focus on both economic and social value creation. I want to thank Rob and our entire Board of Directors for their steadfast encouragement and partnership throughout my tenure. I am excited about Xylem’s next chapter and look forward to working with Matthew over the next several months to ensure a smooth transition.”

COO Matthew Pine said, “Xylem is an outstanding company with an exceptionally talented and purpose-driven team. I am humbled and excited to have the opportunity to build on the strong foundation, momentum and long-term trajectory created under Patrick’s leadership. As we integrate two great companies – Xylem and Evoqua – the whole team is committed to helping our customers address intensifying global water challenges by applying the power of technology and innovation, driving the digital transformation of water, and delivering solutions at scale. Together with our partners, we have an unparalleled opportunity to deliver even more impact, alongside profitable growth and value creation for all our stakeholders.”

Commenting on the CFO succession, Decker said, “Bill will be an outstanding partner in guiding Xylem’s future, and Matthew and I are thrilled to welcome him to the team. A strategic global finance leader, Bill brings an impressive track record of value creation over 20-plus years. His deep experience delivering profitable organic and inorganic growth, focus on productivity, and disciplined approach to capital deployment will serve Xylem well as we continue on our path to deliver sustained organic growth, margin expansion, and above-market returns.”

Decker concluded, “On behalf of our entire company, I want to extend heartfelt thanks to Sandy for her countless contributions as our CFO over the past three years. Her energizing leadership and commitment to excellence have put us in a position of robust financial health and steered us confidently into the next phase of Xylem’s growth.”

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