Nordson Corp. recently announced that Michael F. Hilton plans to retire as president and CEO after nine years with the company. The Board of Directors has reportedly initiated a search of internal and external candidates for his successor, during which Hilton will remain in his current role.

During Hilton’s tenure, Nordson grew from $819 million to $2.3 billion in sales, reportedly due to a deepened focus on innovative products, emerging markets, and strategic acquisitions. Hilton led over 30 transactions at Nordson, including acquisitions that established new product platforms in medical, test and inspection, and flexible packaging.

“After nine years with Nordson, I’ve shared with our Board of Directors my intent to retire by calendar year-end,” Hilton said. “I know Nordson’s strong leadership team will continue to enhance the company’s great legacy. We have entered new markets and grown this business while holding true to Nordson’s core values of integrity, respect for people, customer passion, excellence, and energy. It has been an honor to lead Nordson’s global team of approximately 7,500 associates.”

“On behalf of the entire Board and Nordson team, I want to thank Mike for his vision and leadership,” said Michael Merriman, chairman of the Board of Directors. “Mike has done a tremendous job of diversifying and growing the company through both innovation and acquisition, which has driven the company to record sales and profitability. As we look forward, the Board intends to identify a leader who will build upon Nordson’s great foundation and further enhance value and opportunities for our employees, customers, and shareholders.”

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