FedEx Picks New CEO

Raj Subramaniam—FedEx'sexecutive VP and chief marketing and communications officer—replaces founderFrederick W. Smith as president and CEO.

Shipping and delivery giant FedEx Corp. has named Raj Subramaniam to be the company’s latest president and CEO. On June 1, he will step into the shoes of founder Frederick W. Smith and be tasked with bringing the 600,000-employee business into an economy dominated by online shopping and the promise of automated delivery via drones and bots.

Indian-born Subramaniam brings more than 30 years of experience with the international logistics and shipping company, which he joined in 1991. He was most recently the company’s executive vice president and chief marketing and communications officer, where he was responsible for developing corporate strategy. Since 2020, Subramaniam has been part of the board and was widely expected to replace Smith.

Subramaniam is credited with bold decisions like cutting ties with and phasing out the use of the US Postal Service for last-mile deliveries. Subramaniam has been betting on FedEx becoming a real player in the e-commerce economy, a strategy that delivered outstanding results.

“FedEx changed the world by connecting people and possibilities for the last 50 years,” Smith said in a prepared statement. “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.”

Smith is considered a visionary: He first presented his idea on how to deliver items more quickly in an undergraduate paper at Yale University. His paper was graded C because the strategy was not considered achievable, according to reporting from Entrepreneur magazine. But Smith then founded FedEx, disrupting conventional thinking and creating an industry. Facing heavy losses in 1973 with rising fuel prices, he was said to have saved the day with money won in Las Vegas.

“Fred is a visionary leader and a legend of the business world,” Subramaniam said in a prepared 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.”