Shares of PolyOne ( POL) surged 7% Friday after the polymer compounding company's CEO quit.

The Cleveland-based manufacturer and distributor said Thomas A. Waltermire stepped down as president, chief executive and director, effective immediately.The board named its nonexecutive chairman, William F. Patient, to an interim chief executive post pending the hiring of a successor.

Waltermire became chairman and CEO in September 2000, with the consolidation of predecessor companies Geon and M.A. Hanna. He became president and CEO in November 2003, when Patient joined PolyOne's board as nonexecutive chairman.

"As the company enters the next phase of its strategic evolution, the Board and I agree that the time is right for new leadership," Waltermire said.

Shareholders also agreed. They sent PolyOne up 38 cents to $5.87.

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