Hertz Global Holdings Inc. announced that John P. Tague has been appointed president and chief executive officer and to the company's board of directors, effective November 21, 2014. Tague's appointment follows an extensive search conducted by the Hertz Board of Directors. The search process was overseen by the Board's CEO Search Committee, which is comprised of five independent directors including two recently appointed as part of an agreement with Carl C. Icahn, with the assistance of a leading executive search firm.
Tague is a travel and transportation industry veteran who has delivered demonstrable results in revenue generation, operational excellence and corporate transformation. A former president and chief operating officer of United Airlines, he is credited with innovative product and pricing programs that drove strong financial performance as well as improved customer satisfaction. Most recently, he served as chairman and chief executive officer of Cardinal Logistics Holdings, a leading transportation and logistics provider and private-equity backed company.
Linda Fayne Levinson, independent non-executive chair of the Hertz Board, said, "John is a leader whose record shows a relentless focus on execution and high performance, having driven the successful turnaround of other large, complex consumer facing companies such as United Airlines. The Board was very clear about what we needed in a new CEO for Hertz. We were looking for a world class global leader who knows the travel industry and its players, has an intimate understanding of the revenue optimization equation, drives operational excellence, has driven turnarounds, is a superb people leader, and most of all, understands how to create shareholder value. In John we have found that leader."
Carl C. Icahn, chairman of Icahn Enterprises L.P., commented, "My team and I, along with Linda Fayne Levinson and other members of the Hertz Search Committee, spent a significant amount of time with a number of highly qualified candidates. The Committee performed an extensive search for the CEO position before the Committee and the Board unanimously selected John Tague as the next CEO of Hertz. I have been involved in a number of CEO searches during the last decade and have been quite impressed by the knowledge and imagination of a number of these candidates, many of whom have turned into very successful CEOs. I am happy to say that after listening to John's ideas concerning Hertz and evaluating what he has accomplished at United, I believe he ranks at or near the top of the group. Importantly, Glenn Tilton, the former Chairman and CEO of United Airlines, informed me that John Tague was a key player in the United Airlines turnaround and as President and the former COO he would have been Glenn's recommendation to be the next CEO of United once Glenn retired, had the United / Continental merger not occurred."
Tague said, "I am honored to have been selected to lead Hertz to its full potential at a time of unprecedented opportunity for the Company and industry. I look forward to partnering with Hertz employees as we work to earn sustained industry leadership for the benefit of our shareholders, customers and team."
Levinson added, "On behalf of the Hertz Board, we thank Brian MacDonald for his selflessness in stepping into the interim leadership role. Strategic actions he and the Hertz team have taken over the past months have enabled a smooth transition and put Hertz on stronger footing to address our challenges and achieve success."
About John P. Tague
Tague has served as chief executive officer of Greatwide Logistics Services, LLC since 2011, where he oversaw the merger between Greatwide Logistics Services and Cardinal Logistics Management, Inc. in 2013, creating one of the largest U.S. providers of dedicated transportation. Tague has since served as chairman and chief executive officer of the combined company, Cardinal Logistics Holdings.
Tague previously spent eight years at United Airlines, Inc. and UAL Corporation, where he served in a number of leadership roles, including president and chief operating officer. He served as president of United Airlines and executive vice president of UAL Corporation until the closing of United's merger with Continental Airlines in 2010. In that role, Tague was responsible for all airline management functions, including actions to modernize the fleet. In the year prior to his announced departure from United, United delivered a $1.2 billion revenue improvement, generated a $750 million profit improvement, tightly managed its costs and increased its margin by 16 points, delivering the industry's leading profit margin year to date at that time. After he was appointed president, United's customer satisfaction improved by 70 percent domestically and on-time performance improved from worst to first, with United leading the network carriers in on-time performance.
Tague joined United Airlines and UAL Corporation in 2003 as executive vice president of customers and was part of the team that successfully led United through its $23 billion restructuring and operational turnaround. He held several other leadership positions at the company, including executive vice president and chief operating officer from 2008 to 2009; executive vice president and chief revenue officer from 2006 to 2008; and executive vice president of marketing, sales, and revenue from 2004 to 2006.
Before joining United, Tague held several leadership positions at ATA Holdings Corp., including president and chief executive officer from 1997 to 2002, and president and chief operating officer from 1993 to 1995. Under his leadership, ATA grew from $300 million to $1.4 billion in sales and to employ 8,000 associates. Tague previously served as executive vice president of marketing and planning for ATA. He also held various positions at Midway Airlines, including senior vice president of marketing and planning, and served as chairman, chief executive officer and president of Vanguard Airlines Inc. between 1996 and 1997.
Tague currently serves on the Board of Directors of Choice Hotels International Inc., one of the world's largest lodging franchisors, where he also serves on the Board's Audit Committee and the Compensation and Management Development Committee.
He previously served on the Board of Directors for Reddy Ice Inc., Pacer International, Inc., Orbitz, ATA and United Airlines.