MICHAEL R. D’APPOLONIA, Principal of De Novo Perspectives, is a senior executive with over 35 years of operational, financial and executive management experience encompassing domestic and international operations. He has an outstanding reputation managing companies through challenging financial restructurings, operational improvement, and strategic market repositioning. Mike is accustomed to working in demanding environments requiring decisive executive leadership.
He has wide-ranging industry experience including chemical, construction, defense electronics, financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, retail, sporting goods and transportation. He has directed over 20 successful financial and operational restructurings.
Currently serving as a non-executive director of Exide Technologies, a global manufacturer, distributor and recycler of lead-acid batteries, Mike is chairman of the Finance and Restructuring Committee. Over the past twelve years Mike has served as a non-executive director of two other public company boards; Washington Group International and Westmoreland Coal Company, and has chaired both the Audit and the Compensation Committees and served on the Executive and the Nominating and Governance Committees.
As President and CEO of Kinetic Systems, Inc., a global mechanical engineering and construction company, Mike was responsible for the execution of a focused financial and operational restructuring. Under Mike’s direction, the company realized a 50% improvement in gross profit margin and a 30% reduction in annual SG&A costs within two years. Through its improved operating performance, coupled with the divestiture of certain non-strategic businesses, the company successfully retired all of its debt obligations while accumulating meaningful cash reserves. Concurrent with the company’s financial improvement and business realignment, Mike strengthened the global management team and initiated a leadership development program focusing on the company’s next generation of managers.
Mike’s other major assignments included:
- Serving as President and CRO of Moll Industries, a manufacturer and designer of custom molded and assembled plastic components throughout North America and Europe. The Company served leading multinational companies including Whirlpool, Colgate-Palmolive, Procter & Gamble, Siemens and Revlon. Mike was instrumental in developing a restructuring plan that eliminated unprofitable product lines, liquidated underutilized manufacturing locations and equipment and reorganized the leadership structure. A reconstituted capital structure was negotiated with creditors and a plan of reorganization developed which allowed the company to successfully emerge from bankruptcy.
- Providing Chief Executive Officer interim management services and leading the successful financial restructuring of McCulloch Corporation, a manufacturer and distributor of branded chainsaw and other garden power equipment. Mike successfully helped the Company complete a highly successful orderly liquidation.
- Serving as the CRO of Cone Mills Corporation, a $500 MM textile manufacturer seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. In addition to developing a plan of reorganization, Mike was responsible for day-to-day operations, the 363 sale process, post sale management and liquidation of the remaining estate.
- Serving as interim President of Halston Borghese, a manufacturer and marketer of high-end cosmetics and fragrances. In this capacity, Mike successfully reduced expenses and restructured the cosmetics business operations before transferring control to a permanent management team.
- As interim President of Simmons Upholstered Furniture, a mass market manufacturer of mid-priced upholstered furniture. Mike consolidated and restructured the company’s manufacturing operations.
- Providing financial and operational restructuring advisory services to numerous middle market companies including Ameripol Synpol Corporation, Bally Total Fitness, Inc., Gitano Group, Inc., Murray’s Discount Auto Stores, Inc. and the Grand Union Company.
Mike began his professional career with D’Appolonia Consulting Engineers, Inc. and Engineered Construction International, Inc., privately held companies providing consulting engineering and specialty foundation construction services to industrial and governmental clients worldwide. He served in various senior financial and general management positions in the company’s domestic and foreign operations. The companies operated from offices in the US, Europe, and the Middle East.
Mike is a graduate of The Pennsylvania State University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics.