After leading his company through a roller coaster rise and disastrous fall, a brutal bankruptcy and after facing dozens of lawsuits, the CEO of beleaguered clean energy company SunEdison has finally resigned.
On Wednesday, the company announced that President and CEO Ahmad Chatila has left the company, according to a financial statement.
Chatila will be succeeded by John Dubel, SunEdison’s chief restructuring officer, who joined the company just this April.
Chatila joined SunEdison is February 2009 and led the company through an aggressive acquisition effort that saw the company grow too big, too fast, and in too many directions.
In 2009, semiconductor company MEMC Electronic Materials spent $200 million buying solar startup SunEdison, which was founded by entrepreneur Jigar Shah. SunEdison pioneered selling solar panel systems to businesses and homeowners with little or no upfront fees.
By 2013, the entire conglomerate had changed its name to SunEdison, and by last year the company had sold off its semiconductor business, choosing to focus solely on clean energy.
A major roll-up strategy started in 2014, when the company agreed to spend $2.4 billion to buy wind developer First Wind. Last summer, SunEdison announced yet another massive deal and said it planned to buy one of the largest rooftop solar panel installers, Vivint Solar, for $2.2 billion.
But after that deal, Wall Street started to sour to Chatila’s clean energy domination strategy. The company’s stock plummeted over a six month period. Some SunEdison investors, like hedge fund manager David Tepper, vehemently opposed the Vivint Solar deal and tried to block it in court.
Other lawsuits followed. Earlier this year the company tried to back out of a handful of its deals.
With few options left, in April SunEdison filed for bankruptcy, leaving it with $20.7 billion in assets and liabilities of $16.1 billion. The bankruptcy was touted as one of the largest non-financial bankruptcies of the past 10 years.