The new head of Thomson Reuters Legal will be based in New York

  • Article by: NEAL ST. ANTHONY , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 21, 2013 - 5:25 PM
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Vinod Khosla, co-founder and owner of Khosla Ventures, has increased his stake in Gevo from 11 percent to 14 percent.

Photo: David Paul Morris • Bloomberg News,

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The new executive in charge of what is now the Eagan-based legal division of Thomson Reuters will be based at Thomson Reuters’ corporate headquarters in New York, the company confirmed last week.

Susan Taylor Martin, who runs Thomson Reuters’ legal business in the United Kingdom, will take over the entire legal business in January, succeeding Eagan-based Mike Suchsland, who has been president of the legal unit since 2011, and who is leaving the company this month.

Thomson Reuters, the legal and financial and news media company, is replacing the senior executives overseeing three of its main businesses as part of a reorganization that includes cutting about 3,000, or 5 percent of its global workforce. The company hasn’t specified the cuts but two executives close to the situation said last week Thomson Reuters will end up employing about 7,000 people in Eagan, down from around 7,400 earlier this year, at its legal and data center operations. Thomson Reuters had expanded with construction of data centers, offices and employees since acquiring the old West Publishing more than 15 years ago.

Also, Rick King, Thomson Reuters’ chief operating officer for technology operations, will continue to be based in Eagan, and has been named to the executive team of Thomson Reuters CEO Jim Smith.

Smith is driving the shake-up and streamlining in search of a more productive, profitable company that is focused less on acquisitions and more on organic growth. The lion’s share of the cuts are coming out of global business, scientific publishing and headquarters operations.

Taylor Martin is expected to visit the troops in Eagan in January for an introductory talk about the future of Thomson Reuters Legal. Thomson Reuters Legal saw operating profits slip 1 percent during the first nine months of this year to $704 million on revenue that grew 3 percent to $2.48 billion.

Venture capitalist still likes Gevo

Venture capitalist Vinod Khosla has significantly upped his stake in Gevo Inc., the company trying to brew a new, higher-value alcohol at a converted ethanol plant in Luverne, Minn.

Gevo, based in Englewood, Colo., has struggled to ramp up production of isobutanol, a biofuel and renewable chemical. The company, after burning through much of its cash from a 2011 IPO, raised another $22.6 million in a stock offering this month.

Khosla, a famed Silicon Valley investor, has been Gevo’s largest stockholder. He purchased another 2.2 million shares in the offering, boosting his stake from 11 percent to more than 14 percent. If he exercises warrants that were part of the latest offering, his stake could go to 17 percent.

Yet Gevo’s stock price has been hammered, trading below $2 per share since July. Khosla’s stake in Gevo was worth more than $120 million in February 2011, according to Bloomberg data. On Friday, his shares had a market value of $12 million. Khosla declined to be interviewed.

DAVID SHAFFER

Pouliot caps career with book and designs retirement at 79

Ted Pouliot, former owner of Pouliot Design and consultant to international decorating businesses, has capped a half-century career with an interesting book, “Import Your Ideas.” The book includes a fictional story of two young importers, a how-to-guide for intrepid small importers and reminiscences of Pouliot’s “personal and unusual experiences” going back to the 1960s in China, Central America, Tonga, Turkey, Taiwan and elsewhere. It’s available at www.import­yourideas.com.

“It took me three years to put all my experience and ideas down in one place,” quipped Pouliot. “I guess it did conclude my career …”

But there’s still lots of purpose in retirement. Pouliot, 79, who also is a painter, volunteers three days a week with Catholic Charities in Minneapolis, working with homeless families on housing, training and employment.

“I’ve learned a lot from homeless people,” said Pouliot, “I’ve learned how hard it can be to get a job if you’ve had a criminal conviction, about mental health barriers and how you need a decent income to afford a very modest apartment. I’m also working on a housing project for homeless people. It’s all very exciting.”

Short Takes

• Summit Brew­ing Co., Car­din­al of Minnesota and Land O’Lakes were fet­ed this month for their “gen­er­ous con­tri­bu­tions to the com­muni­ty and out­stand­ing cor­po­rate giv­ing program” at the 37th Annu­al Key­stone Lunch­eon of the Minnesota Regional Chamber of Commerce.

• Mar­tin Williams Advertising helped Fin­ne­gans, the local beer out­fit that do­nates prof­its to hun­ger-re­lated caus­es, with a new website and com­mu­ni­ca­tions pack­age. Fin­ne­gans, brewed by Summit Brew­ing and run by Jac­quie Berg­lund, works at the cor­ner of busi­ness, charity and in­no­va­tion to de­liv­er more fresh food to the Em­er­gen­cy FoodShelf Network. Berg­lund who once worked for Kieran Folliard’s pubs, start­ed Fin­ne­gans with his bless­ing in 2000.



 

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