Duke Energy

It can’t be a coincidence that perhaps the greatest 8-K ever filed was filed at 5:07pm on July 3:

In connection with the Merger described in Item 2.01 of this Current Report on Form 8-K and pursuant to the terms of the Merger Agreement, effective as of the effective time of the Merger, William D. Johnson, the former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Progress Energy, was appointed as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Duke Energy.

Mr. Johnson, age 58, was Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Progress Energy, from October 2007 through July 2, 2012. … Mr. Johnson previously served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Progress Energy, from January 2005 to October 2007.

Mr. Johnson subsequently resigned as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Duke Energy. See disclosure below under the heading “Resignation of Mr. Johnson and Reappointment of Mr. Rogers.”

I have no way of researching this but I’ll go out on a limb and say it’s unlikely that any company has ever previously announced the hiring and firing of a CEO within three paragraphs of each other in the same 8-K, with an employment agreement dated June 27 and a separation agreement dated July 2. This is not, of course, just a case of hiring a young whippersnapper who seemed full of potential and then finding him injecting heroin in the executive bathroom on his first day on the job; there seems to be some more Machiavellian maneuvering going on. Duke and Progress completed a stock-for-stock merger this week, forming the new Duke Energy; the deal gave Duke shareholders 63% of the combined company and 11 of the 18 new directors, including the executive chairman, while Progress’s CEO was set to be president and CEO of the combined company. Which, and expect to hear this argued in all seriousness in court: he totally was for five days! The Journal has more: Read more »