Lubrizol names next CEO

09:57 AM | June 2, 2016 | Deepti Ramesh

Lubrizol has named Eric Schnur, currently executive v.p. and chief operating officer, as president, effective immediately, and he will become chairman and CEO on 2 January 2017. James Hambrick, the current chairman and CEO, will retire from the company. Hambrick has been Lubrizol’s CEO since 2004. Lubrizol also announced that Greg Taylor, senior v.p./corporate strategy and development, will retire later this year.

Schnur joined Lubrizol in 1989 as a development engineer in R&D . He has held a variety of positions across numerous product lines in the company’s additives and advanced materials business segments, including technical and commercial roles. Schnur also has worked at several company facilities, including the additives site in Singapore, where he led engine oils marketing and technical services for Southeast Asia and Australia.

During negotiations for Berkshire Hathaway's 2011 acquisition of Lubrizol, chairman and CEO Warren Buffett asked Hambrick to remain with Lubrizol for five years following the acquisition. Buffett has called Lubrizol one of Berkshire's "Powerhouse Five" non-insurance businesses. Under Berkshire, Lubrizol has completed a number of bolt-on acquisitions, including Particle Sciences, a contract drug development and manufacturing organization; Warwick Chemicals, a producer and supplier of stain removal technology for fabric care applications; and Weatherford International’s global oilfield chemicals business. In 2014, Berkshire completed an acquisition of Phillips 66’s flow-improver business, which is independently managed by a team overseen by Lubrizol.

Lubrizol, which was founded in 1928, has approximately 9,000 employees worldwide and generated sales of $7 billion in 2015. Lubrizol says that Hambrick has led the transformation of Lubrizol from a $2 billion lubricant additives company to a $7 billion specialty chemical company. Hambrick expanded the company's portfolio through numerous strategic acquisitions, the most significant being Noveon International in 2004, the company says.