What the heck is going on here? How can a company fall from $24.13 in September 2008 after having its best quarter (Q2 2008) of this century to a low of $4.71?
Management refused to mention that it was a record quarter in the PR as I pointed out before. Why? Were they afraid that the stock would go too high to make their planned convertible offering attractive? Now, we have exactly the opposite problem now.
What can be done now to save Ferro? It's too late for asset sales even at fire-sale prices. The only option is to cut jobs deeply. I would not be surprised if we see a 15% to 20% jobs cut.
Why has the management been silent on this massive 80%decline in about 5 months?
How can this stock fall by about 40% from January 6th 2009 when it hit $7.77?
Will Ferro survive this downturn without declaring bankruptcy?
Enquiring minds and shraeholders would like to know.
I saw the end coming for some time, and sold all awarded FOE stock early in 2008. Ortino traded talent for sychophants, portfolio management of businesses overinvested in sexy businesses at the expense of steady business units. Lost the opportunity to sell Plastics at $100MM in 2007, now it's worth much less. The company is held together by the heroic effort of the remaining employees.
While J.K. is struggling, imagine what would have happened if he wasn't groomed prior to Ortino's passing...
Having said that, the stock is worth more than $4.70 if you have any faith in the economy rebounding in 2009.
"Ortino already chased away "good" vice presidents and replaces them by "yes" knickers."
I observed that, too.
That's why I was somewhat suspicious of any management hired by Ortino.
Is it any surprise that Ortino hired Kirsch with his minimal educational achievements? And is it any surprise that the former "Yes Man" gets his own coterie of "Yes Men".
Ortino was the gift that keeps on giving. Don't cry for me, Argentina, as it's too late for tears.
Sorry, that you got cheated by Ortino of your bonus. But that was Ortino being Ortino.
Ortino already chased away "good" vice presidents and replaces them by "yes" knickers.
I worked for 22 years in several countries on different continents.
My retirement farewell was a big trick to escape the paying out of the bonus for the last working year.
WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND !!!!
I feel great satisfaction now,however not with what will happen with the working people all over the world.Many very competent and Ferro-minded
I held my piece until I left Ferro. I admit I took their money, although I was one of a very few who worked for it.
I concur with the previous statements. Sounds like the other divisions were smack on with the ones that I have seen.
Ferro was almost cutting edge in the 80's but the old guard were ignorant falks. Since then, they found out that showmanship does not a business make.
My bet is that the competition aint much better right now. My money rides on this pig. The gut and 10 years of business school never fail me.
FOE only has one leg in the grave. The greatest thing is that I turned their paltry severance into a tidy sum fit for a Kirsch...and they are gonna come through one more time. Did you mark those words?
"My personal opinion is that Kirsch is doing his best with what he has which is a company full of deadwood and outdated ideas who will resist anything new."
Is this save your losing, incompetent CEO weekend? By any objective measure of performance, Kirsch has been a total failure with the stock having lost more than 75% under his watch. And what is the latest action he takes - a new SEC filing on January 7, 2009 to burnish his golden parachute:
"Mr. Kirsch's severance multiple was increased from two times his base salary and target bonus to three times."
While Ferrto crashes and burns, there is yet more money for those who led it there.
Maybe, some of you are taking the YouTube video of "Sponsor an Executive" (see earlier post) far too seriously. As you were wont to take Kirsch's slogans of "Winning from Within" and "Velocity" seriously too. His slogans are cornier than the entire state of Iowa. And the fact that he can say them with a straight face shows that he missed his true calling - as a Carnival Barker at a State Fair.
People on this forum have charged Ferro employees with being liars, incompetents and deadwood. What proof do you have of that except your jaundiced opinions? And if you really cared about Ferro, why did you hold your peace until Ferro is crashing and burning? Some people have the perverse foible of blaming rape victims for the crime. The same propensity for perversity prevails here.
And in honor of save your incomptent CEO weekend, here is the YouTube link again:
I used to work for one of the Ferro foreign subsidiaries. If the rest of Ferro is anything like the division I worked in, it is no wonder the company is in a shambles. Most of the staff in the division had been there for 20 years + and this is reflected in their attitudes and work ethic which is stuck in the 1980's. The person with the least years of service had been there for 8 years. Any new ideas or changes were resisted with a typical response being "we tried that 10 years ago and it didn't work". There are loads of people on big salaries complete with a company car who do very little but whinge about how terrible head office in Cleveland is and how bad they have it. If Ferro goes under it would be interesting to see how long these people last in the real world. My personal opinion is that Kirsch is doing his best with what he has which is a company full of deadwood and outdated ideas who will resist anything new. He was always going to have a very difficult if not impossible task of turning around Ferro with the culture the way it is. The restructuring and the cost cutting is on the right track but unfortunately Ferro may have left it too late in implementing the changes and will ultimately be a victim of years of mismanagement and burying their heads in the sand. If they had only started these measures a few years earlier.
I still think that you are being very charitable to Kirsch. Since many consider charity a virtue (and I do too, when it is directed to the needy), I will not carp about your charity.
I would not touch Ferro stock here. Options are dirt cheap here and you can double and triple your money on a move to $7.
Then sell half your options so you have no money at risk.
Next short stock worth half your option holdings and let the other half ride so you make money whether the stock goes up or down.
The markets are too unsettled to risk your principal here.
That's my game plan for the moment but it may change by Tuesday.
BTW, PolyOne is very similar to Ferro in market cap and financials and stock behavior (and location). They just cut their workforce by 8% on Thursday and the stock lost 10% of its value on Friday. That does not bode well for any restructuring Ferro may be considering.
No, most MBA's are not incompetent...after 10-15yrs in a progressive company.
Honestly, cajunas and good sense make up 75% of leadership. I love that new Yahoo CEO although she's also too late for the miracle turnaround.
Kirsch just came in on the downswing with very little financial powder left in the Ferro guns.
It was a situation where you only get one shot...and it better be a good one.
'Win from within' was a good slogan. You underestimate the sheep-like attitude of FOE employees. They like that crap for the most part.
Most adults could do without the 'buzzwords' and ra-ra crap that smack of the 1980's US imperialist business model that recently failed.
That was a start, but it had to be followed up with big initiatives and a culling of the herd (I believe the credit card and goodwill ran short at the defining moment).
Jim can't help that his underlings probably lie to him about budgets and project timelines (and competence in their respective fields). Poor guy can't be expected to know everything.
Either way, I am working up a full analysis of sector performance expectations for 2009 and will apply this to the current state of FOE financials.
If you would like to do some research on the state of their financial covenants, then this could be a worthwhile message board.
If all looks good, I will add to my position substantially at $4.75-$5.00.
I really need to investigate their legacy costs, RM, inventory turns, and pipeline(if they have one) to see if the downturn will help offset sales in the next 6 mos.
A full analysis is in order, at this really dictates stock moves with an unloved, bottomed out stock. Everyone wants to know if it is worth the gamble. Fear looms large when a company follows the path that we have seen here (it often dont turn out so good)
"...and the alternative to Kirsch would be...an incompetent MBA maybe???"
You are under the impression that all MBAs are incompetent. You are correct if you meant that an incompetent MBA would an equal alternative to Kirsch.
"It is difficult to hire anyone with actual experience that matches a company like Ferro."
Why? Because you say so. Or you know the culture at Ferro and every other company on the planet. For the money Ferro is paying Kirsch, Ferro could get much, much better value for their money.
"Don't blame Kirsch for jumping into deep water without a life vest."
Should we blame Ferro for showing him the green? If his judgement is so poor, then he does not deserve the job
Kirsch is a total failure as far as Ferro's stock price is concerned. Ferro stock was $19.85 on December 15, 2006 when the Board of Directors of Ferro Corporation (NYSE:FOE) elected James F. Kirsch as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.
We find two other people from Dow among Ferro VPs including one who had retired in 2003 and his eduational qualification is just a Bachelor's Degree from Mississippi State (Thomas Austin). Apparently, lack of educational achievement is a positive at Ferro and we see the cosequences in its stock price.
Not a single long-term employee from Ferro has been promoted to a VP - they are just morons to take orders from their intellectual superiors like Kirsch and his educationally-challenged buddies.
And what are these vapid slogans such as "Winning from Within." Does anyone Win from Without? Do angels descend from heaven to bail you out when business heads south? Apparently, Kirsch has closed out that possibility with his winning slogan - so no divine providence is going to save this company.
Maybe the board can save the company by firing Kirsch and his buddies. And let them take their corny slogans with them.
Yeah, Kirsch is also chairman of the board - so how does Kirsch get fired?
Thank you, Ortino, for hiring Kirsch. Thank you, Ferro board, for your unmatched governance of this company.