Jacobson takes over from Bill Muir, who became CEO in October 2018 when he succeeded long-standing chief Guy Gecht. EFI said Muir was stepping down for personal reasons.
His appointment was confirmed today (13 August).
In a statement, Jacobson said he was thrilled with his new role and praised Muir’s contribution during a pivotal period when EFI was acquired by Siris in a $1.7bn (£1.36bn) deal.
He said: “I am thrilled to be expanding my role on EFI’s leadership team to identify unique opportunities for innovation across the Company. EFI’s portfolio of best-in-class solutions presents an exciting opportunity to drive further growth in high-quality inkjet and integrated, digital workflows.
“Together with my experienced and talented colleagues on the EFI team, we will provide the leadership needed to help EFI accelerate the transformation of industries where colourful images matter.
“I also want to join the EFI team in thanking Bill for his contributions to the company’s success and wishing him the best in his future endeavours. Bill played a pivotal role in successfully positioning EFI for the next chapter of our evolution, always doing so with integrity and the best interests of customers and employees.”
Speaking to PrintWeek a year ago after he announced he would be standing down, Gecht talked about the possibility that Jacobson could potentially be a candidate to replace him. At the time he described Jacobson as “an incredible leader and also a friend”, and said: “Any company that he would run would be very fortunate to have him.”
Jacobson has spent more than three decades in the industry in a number of executive roles, most recently as CEO at Xerox during a turbulent period when activist investors Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason won a battle for control of the business and made wholesale changes to the Xerox board.
Prior to that he was chief operating officer at Kodak’s Graphic Communications business, and before that president and chief executive of Kodak Polychrome Graphics.
He joined Siris as an executive partner earlier this year, and became EFI executive chairman last month.
Muir commented: “It has been a privilege to lead EFI through an important chapter in the company’s history, and I look forward to seeing EFI thrive as it continues to collaborate with customers and partners worldwide.
“I have admired Jeff as an expert in the digital imaging space, and I am confident that with his vision and under his leadership, EFI will be able to successfully write the next chapter of innovation and market leadership across the Company’s portfolio of solutions.”
EFI's product range spans a wide range of industry applications, including large- and superwide-format, textiles, inks, corrugated, MIS and productivity, and printer frontend systems.