UPS has announced that chief operating officer Jim Barber, 59, will retire by the end of the year.
The multinational parcel delivery company didn't disclose the reason for Barber's exit, but noted rather his contributions to the company, especially for leading growth in Europe and Asia during his 35 years with UPS.
“We deeply appreciate Jim’s many contributions to UPS,” said David Abney, UPS chairman and CEO. “He guided our International teams to strong growth and performance for successive years, even when market conditions were challenging. More recently he built a strong team and helped them implement plans for improved performance in our Domestic and Supply Chain segments, as shown in our operating results.”
Before assuming the COO post at UPS’s International business in 2013, Barber served as president of UPS Europe, helping oversee the second wave of international expansion for UPS.
Drawing upon his experience in UPS's Mergers and Acquisitions Group, he also oversaw several key acquisitions and integrations, including Pieffe Group, an Italy-based pharmaceutical logistics company, and Lynx Express, one of the UK's independent parcel carriers.
As part of UPS's growing focus on e-commerce, Jim led the acquisition of Kiala S.A., a company with a network of package collection points in France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Spain. Earlier in his career, Barber held diverse positions in finance and operations management located in the US, United Kingdom, Belgium and Germany.
“UPS has such great growth opportunities, a fantastic management team, along with a solid strategy to go forward for even more success,” said Barber. “I’m proud of the UPS team and honoured to have been a part of some great steps forward in the evolution of the company abroad and here in the US.”
Abney allayed fears over what some people say is a leadership uncertainty at UPS following Barber's surprise resignation.
Reports said Abney described Barber's exit as a “natural progression,” while reiterating that the Atlanta-based logistics giant has a “very deep bench” for succession.