By Published on .

CINCINNATI ( -- As Church & Dwight prepares to integrate two acquisitions that roughly double its size, the marketer of Arm & Hammer baking soda and other personal- and home-care products finds itself looking for a long-term successor to longtime Chairman-CEO Robert Davies III.

The executive who had been identified as Mr. Davies' successor, Jon L. Finley, 46, has resigned as president, the company announced today, after less than four months on the job.

"Jon Finley did reach a conclusion that the situation for him at Church & Dwight was not developing the way he had hoped and that it would be in his own best interests as well as the interests of the company for him to resign at this time," Mr. Davies said during a conference call with analysts.

James L. Rogula, who retired earlier this year as executive vice president from the Scotts Co., has agreed to join Church & Dwight as president of its personal-care business and ArmKel, the holding company that controls the Carter-Wallace brands Church & Dwight has agreed to acquire. Mr. Rogula formerly headed Church & Dwight's core Arm & Hammer business and was formerly vice president of new products at Carter-Wallace when that company launched Arrid Extra Dry deodorant in the 1970s.

But Mr. Davies, 65, said he and the company's board continue to look for another executive who could become a long-term successor for the top job.

During his short stint, Mr. Finley worked on Church & Dwight's acquisition of USA Detergents and its Xtra detergent brand and the Carter-Wallace deal, which the company expects to close by September. Mr. Finley was a former General Mills executive who worked on that company's pending acquisition of Pillsbury last year before joining Church & Dwight.

Mr. Davies said Church & Dwight's marketing spending has been flat at $92.5 million through the first half of 2001 compared to last year, but expects marketing outlays to increase by an order of 1% to 2% as a percent of sales -- or $5 million to $10 million -- in the second half behind new product launches in oral care and cat litter. The marketer also plans to restage its underarm deodorant line sometime next year, he said.

Church & Dwight reported net income of $13.5 million for the second quarter, up 8.9%. Earnings per share increased 6.5% to 33 cents on sales of $257.1 million, up 27%. Those figures include the impact of the USA Detergent acquisition, which was completed late in the quarter.

In this article:
Most Popular