Caterpillar says 2 group presidents retiring

PEORIA, Ill. -- Caterpillar said on Thursday that long-time executives Rich Lavin and Gerard Vittecoq are retiring, and the heavy-equipment maker named their replacements.

Lavin was Caterpillar's group president for Construction Industries and Growth Markets. He joined the company as an attorney in 1984. In 2007 he moved to Hong Kong, becoming the company's first executive officer to live and work in Asia.

Caterpillar said Lavin will be replaced by Ed Rapp, who joined the company in 1979 as a pricing analyst, and was named a vice president in 2000.

Vittecoq was group president for Energy and Power Systems. He joined the company in 1975 and held various accounting and finance positions.

He is being replaced as group president by Jim Umpleby, who has run Caterpillar's solar turbines business.

Caterpillar Inc. shares fell 31 cents to close at $82.85.