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FedEx founder and CEO Fred Smith plans to step down from his leadership role within the company and serve as executive chairman. 

The change was announced on Monday and will become effective on June 1. Raj Subramaniam, FedEx’s current president, will become president and CEO of the company, according to a statement

“FedEx has changed the world by connecting people and possibilities for the last 50 years,” Smith said. “As we look toward what’s next, I have a great sense of satisfaction that a leader of the caliber of Raj Subramaniam will take FedEx into a very successful future.”

The 77-year-old added that his new role within the Memphis-based company would focus on “[b]oard governance as well as issues of global importance, including sustainability, innovation, and public policy.”

“Fred is a visionary leader and a legend of the business world,” Subramaniam, who has been with FedEx since 1991, said in the statement.

“He founded one of the world’s greatest and most admired companies, and it is my honor and privilege to step into this role and build upon what he has created,” the incoming CEO added. 

In recent months, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented the transport giant with new challenges, but Smith has previously voiced confidence in his company’s ability to keep up with the demand. 

“I think we’re ready for this,” Smith said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” ahead of the busy holiday season late last year.

“We’re ready, assuming that we can get the employees. The lack of employees, particularly since last spring and into the summer, partially because of the delta variant and partially because of the stimulus which hit right before the delta variant took hold of a lot of the country, created a lot of employment issues,” Smith said. 

“We think we’ll be able to work through it,” he added at the time.

Tags fedex FedEx fred smith Raj Subramaniam Service industries Transport

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