who grew General Electric into an industrial powerhouse, has died. He was 84.
Jack Welch, who built General Electric into an industrial and financial powerhouse and became known for an aggressive management style, has died.
During his reign from 1981 to 2001, the company's market value skyrocketed to $410 billion from $12 billion. For his success in growing GE's value, Fortune magazine dubbed him "manager of the century" in 1999.
Welch aggressively bought and sold divisions, insisting GE rank near the top of any business in which it operated.
But his style of management came under a lot of scrutiny and criticism after he left. Welch was known as "Neutron Jack" for cutting tens of thousands of jobs, and critics say the seeds of GE's downfall were planted under his tenure.
Jack Welch served as General Electric's chief executive from 1981 to 2001sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more
The cause of death was renal failure, his wife, Suzy Welch, told The New York Times.
Welch, who was chairman and CEO of GE from 1981 to 2001, presided over a huge increase in the company's stock and operations.
Named "Manager of the Century" by Fortune in 1999, Welch became known for his willingness to make big bets, slash jobs and sell businesses. He also published best-selling business books like "Winning" and "Jack: Straight from the Gut" and began a second career as a corporate leadership guru.
"If you grew up in business in the '90s, early 2000s, Jack Welch had a huge impact on the way you approach business," said Timothy Hubbard, assistant professor of management at the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, who studies CEOs.
Welch left an imprint on business strategy and corporate governance that "you see ripple through companies even today," Hubbard said. "I still refer students to his book."
The year before Welch became CEO, GE posted about $27 billion in revenue. In his last full year as CEO, the company had nearly $130 billion in revenue, having recently achieved the title as the most valuable company in the world. Its total market capitalization climbed from $14 billion to $410 billion.
Welch, who was born in 1935, joined GE as a chemical engineer in 1960 after earning degrees from the University of Massachusetts and the University of Illinois.sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more