Board Authorizes Additional Share Purchases
NEW YORK; Nov. 13, 2003 – Accenture has appointed two new independent directors, Dennis F. Hightower and William L. Kimsey, to the company’s board of directors. The appointments are effective immediately.
The appointments support Accenture’s plan to transition the composition of its board to a majority of independent directors.
“We are committed to maintaining a board of directors and a corporate governance framework for Accenture that reflect today’s best practices,” said Joe W. Forehand, Accenture chairman and CEO. “In Dennis and Bill, we have two highly respected former chief executives and management experts who bring strengths and skills that complement those of our existing board members in providing valuable oversight and direction to the strategy, operations and management of Accenture.”
Mr. Forehand said that in addition to their general corporate experience, Mr. Hightower and Mr. Kimsey were selected for the specific strengths that each can bring. Mr. Hightower has international experience consistent with Accenture’s global presence, having served as a senior executive in the both the United States and Europe. He is expected to serve on the Nominating & Governance and Compensation committees of the Accenture board. Mr. Kimsey, who was previously the CEO of Ernst & Young Global, Ltd., brings to Accenture special expertise in accounting policy and knowledge of finance issues. He is expected to serve on the Audit Committee.
In connection with these appointments, Jackson L. Wilson, Jr., has stepped down from the board. He will continue in his position as Accenture’s chief executive – Business Process Outsourcing and will also continue to serve on Accenture’s Management Committee, Executive Committee and Global Leadership Council.
Accenture also said that its board of directors has authorized an additional $150 million for the repurchase of Accenture common stock from time to time in the open market. Shares acquired in open-market purchases by Accenture will continue to be used by the Accenture Stock Employee Compensation Trust (SECT) to provide shares for select Accenture employee benefits, such as equity awards to future partners.
The board of directors also authorized an additional $600 million for use by the company in its ongoing Share Management Plan, through which Accenture periodically redeems or acquires shares held by partners, former partners, and their permitted transferees. At the discretion of Accenture management, a portion of these authorized funds may also be used by Accenture to purchase shares received by employees under restricted share units granted in connection with the company’s initial public offering.
Dennis F. Hightower
Mr. Hightower, 62, has had distinguished careers in both the private and public sectors, including more than 30 years of experience in global marketing, strategic planning, operations and international general management. Most recently, Mr. Hightower was CEO of Europe Online Networks S.A., a privately held broadband interactive entertainment company based in Luxembourg. From 1996 to 2000, he was a professor of Management and a senior lecturer at the Harvard Business School.
From 1987 to 1996 Mr. Hightower was a senior executive with the Walt Disney Company, where he served in various positions, including president of Walt Disney Television & Telecommunications and president of Consumer Products, Europe, Middle East and Africa. Prior to joining Walt Disney, Mr. Hightower was an executive director and managing director with Russell Reynolds Associates, Inc., and vice president of corporate planning at Mattel Inc. He also held positions with General Electric, McKinsey & Co. and Xerox Corporation. Before entering the private sector, Mr. Hightower was highly decorated for his service in the U.S. Army, where he rose to the rank of major. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BS degree from Howard University.
William L. Kimsey
Mr. Kimsey, 61, was formerly the CEO of Ernst & Young Global, Ltd., a position he held from 1998 until his retirement from the company in 2002. While CEO, he oversaw the realignment of the firm’s structure, strategy and performance measurement worldwide.
During his 32-year tenure at Ernst & Young, Mr. Kimsey also served as deputy chairman and chief operating officer; vice chairman and West Region managing partner; vice chairman and Southwest Region managing partner; managing partner of the Kansas City office; and director of management consulting in the St. Louis office. His experience in the public sector includes serving as director of Budgets & Accounting Systems for the Kansas City, Missouri, public schools and director of Revenue & Administration for Jackson County, Missouri.
Additional information about Accenture’s board of directors can be found in the Corporate Governance section of accenture.com.
Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company. Committed to delivering innovation, Accenture collaborates with its clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments. With deep industry and business process expertise, broad global resources and a proven track record, Accenture can mobilize the right people, skills, and technologies to help clients improve their performance. With more than 83,000 people in 48 countries, the company generated net revenues of US$11.8 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2003. Its home page iswww.accenture.com.