Mike Lawrie, chief executive of Misys, the banking software company which is in merger talks with Swiss rival Temenos, has already announced his next move, to take over as president and chief executive of Computer Sciences Corporation, the US-based IT services company.
Before the ink had properly dried on an agreement on principal terms between Misys and Temenos, CSC made public Mr Lawrie’s plans to take over from Michael Laphen, who had previously announced plans to retire.
Mr Lawrie’s swift appointment to CSC raised a few eyebrows among analysts. The deal with Temenos is still at an early stage and if it does not happen, Misys could be left leaderless and in a weakened position.
“If this merger falls apart and there is no other bid it doesn’t leave Misys in a pretty position,” said Julian Yates, analyst at Investec.
Mr Lawrie is credited with a successful turnround at Misys, having successfully sold the company’s previously struggling healthcare business for $1.3bn and created new products to help return the banking software group to growth. Mr Lawrie was previously a partner at ValueAct Capital, the US investment fund which subsequently became Misys’ biggest shareholder.
The companies had already said that Mr Lawrie would not stay with Misys following a deal with Temenos. Guy Dubois, chief executive of Temenos, is to lead the combined group.
CSC will present a new turnround challenge for Mr Lawrie. The US company reported a $2.88bn loss in November because of large writedown and warned that uncertainty about public-sector and European spending would affect its annual results. In December it said it might have to write off the $1.5bn value of a disputed contract with the UK’s National Health Service.