Canadian Pacific Railway has tapped E. Hunter Harrison as CEO and president, following a fierce proxy fight in which an activist investor argued the former Canadian National chief could make the railroad more profitable.
Harrison, who was also elected to the board of directors, is widely credited as making CN the most profitable major railroad in North America. William Ackman, principal of Pershing Square Capital Management, wrestled control of the railroad from CP management in May after CEO Fred Green resigned and six other members declined to stand for re-election.
“CP is an incredible franchise with significant market opportunity, solid infrastructure, and innovative and hard-working employees,” said Harrison. “I am proud to be working with one of North America’s iconic companies and I look forward to quickly getting to know the priorities of CP’s customers, shareholders, employees, and the communities served by the railway.”
The board of director endorsed and appointed Harrison after a CEO selection process, said CP Board Chairman Paul Haggis. Judging from Harrison’s past performances, he will likely focus the railroad on gaining tighter scheduling, asset utilization and operation efficiency.