Everyone's Scheming to Be CEO in Succession – 7 Theories About Who'll Come Out on Top
The last season of Succession ended with a major twist. Kendall rebelled against his father, Logan Roy, when he publicly aired Waystar-Royco’s dirty laundry in a press conference instead of taking the fall for him. A power move if I ever saw one. Season 3 finds Logan on the defensive, stuck between a rock and a hard place, and once again, we’re left wondering who will come out on top running Waystar Royco when the dust settles.
Succession is a constant game of chess with fault lines constantly being drawn, alliances being made, and backs being stabbed. The power rankings constantly shift from week to week. Will one of the Roy children end up as the CEO of Waystar Royco, or someone else in Logan’s inner circle of allies? It’s a little hard to tell this early in the game (the show was just renewed for a fourth season), but we’ve got some theories ahead.
Will Logan Roy Resume His Position as CEO in the End?
It’s more than possible Logan comes out of all the scandal on top, though not without some battle scars. The FBI raids the Waystar Royco headquarters, so things aren’t looking great, but Logan also has the president and several other government officials on speed dial. As one Reddit user suggests, he might just watch from the sidelines while his children tear each other apart, disqualifying themselves for the CEO position. Then, he’ll return to his top position, triumphant.
Logan’s Odds: High
Remember, Succession started off with Logan baiting his kids into thinking he’d pass off the reins to one of them, and then stubbornly staying on as if he’ll live forever. It’s not easy giving up the keys to the kingdom.
Will Gerri Kellman Be Waystar Royco's CEO in the End?
In the premiere of season 3, with the Department of Justice breathing down Logan’s neck over the cruise ship scandal, he decides to take a step back from his role as CEO. The siblings and Roy’s inner circle of advisors jockey for the position of interim CEO, but Roy picks Gerri for the job. There’s a chance she stays right where she is.
Gerri’s Odds: High
Although Gerri is loyally carrying out Logan’s bidding for now, she’s just as cunning and manipulative as everyone around her. After all, she knows the company’s secrets, and her hands are relatively clean. As Roman says, Gerr-bear has “mad, scheming scissorhands” so you know she’s got a few tricks up her sleeve. Clearly, Roy thinks she’s a threat – why else would he tell Roman to keep an eye on her? Little does he know, it seems Roman is genuinely in Gerri’s corner, which may pan out for her (and Roman) in the end.
Will Roman Roy Be Waystar Royco's CEO in the End?
In the second episode of the third season, it’s clear that Roman positioned himself as an apprentice to Gerri. This is an alliance that could pan out well for him if he has hopes of becoming CEO. Even though Roman can’t completely trust her (she’s got a stake in the game as well), he seeks out her advice about switching to Kendall’s side in the Roy family civil war. Her answer: “Stick with me, Roman.” She didn’t say stick with your father or stick with the company. Instead, she said, “Stick with me.”
Roman’s Odds: Medium
This can go two ways. Either dynamic duo Roman and Gerri take over Waystar Royco together, or Logan hands the CEO position to his son. At the end of the most recent episode, Roy calls Gerri “the heart of everything through this sh*it storm, but wearing a full chemical and biological suit.” Gerri is clearly a formidable opponent that can bring Logan down and put her partner in crime, Roman, at the top if she puts her mind to it. Or there’s a chance Logan chooses his son as the next CEO somewhere down the line. After all, Roman did score extra points from daddy for spying on Kendall and Gerri.
Will Kendall Roy Be Waystar Royco's CEO in the End?
Kendall strikes out against Logan when he pins all of Waystar Royco’s scandals and horrendous company culture on him (not undeservedly, to be fair). Now he’s lawyered up with the best of the best, Lisa Arthur (Sanaa Lathan), who’s taken his side instead of Logan’s.
Kendall’s Odds: Medium
There might be a chance Kendall will take over as CEO, but it’s going to take a whole lot, like the Department of Justice sending Logan to rich people jail or somehow getting all his siblings to betray their father, which he’s already failed at once. Still, he’s making moves to get major Waystar Royco shareholders in his back pocket. However, it’s possible his desperate desire to be a fan-favorite on Twitter and his overly ambitious, impulsive nature (the words “Detoxify our brand, and we can go supersonic” literally came out of his mouth) will sew doubt and scare off the shareholders.
Will Shiv Roy Be Waystar Royco's CEO in the End?
Let’s be real. Shiv’s got a lot stacked against her. In Waystar Royco, she’s an outsider. In her own words, “I’ve never worked in the company, and I don’t even have a f*cking job title.” And let’s not forget that one of Waystar Royco’s scandals is rooted in its sexist company culture.
Shiv’s Odds: Medium
Let’s not underestimate Shiv. At the end of the second episode, Logan finally gives her a position as president of domestic operations so that she can be his eyes and ears on Gerri. One solution to Waystar Royco’s image problems is new leadership. It needs a new face for the company that represents the changing cultural tides. Shiv is smart and determined. It’s possible she could use that to her advantage to claim the coveted CEO title everyone is gunning for.
Will Tom Wambsgans Be Waystar Royco's CEO in the End?
If Tom Wambsgans plays his cards right, he could be Waystar RoyCo’s next CEO. Logan trusts Tom enough to include him in his inner circle (he invites him to fly on his private jet). A Reddit user also suspects Tom will turn against Shiv at some point, especially after she told him she wanted an open marriage on their wedding night. There’s not much tying them together now. Perhaps down the line, he will throw her under the bus to get a leg up?
Tom’s Odds: Low
Another Reddit user thinks that the season 3 promo teases Tom switching from Logan’s side to Kendall’s. If you take a look at the season three posters, a line divides Kendall, Tom, and Greg on one side with Logan, Shiv, Roman, and Connor on the other. The show’s creators could be foreshadowing a major betrayal. In the poster, Kendall is still right at the front, leading the charge. With his big ambitions, it doesn’t seem likely Kendall would give Tom the CEO title without a fight.
Will Greg Hirsch Be Waystar Royco's CEO in the End?
Adorable Cousin Greg is always trying to do right. Greg’s biggest power move thus far in the game has been copying incriminating Waystar Royco documents before destroying them and siding with Kendall. He’s simply not as cutthroat as his cousins. One Reddit user has faith he’ll end up running the company somehow. As Gerri stated, if Logan’s children end up going up against him, they’ll end up in some serious snake linguini, and they could all get burned in the end. Greg, however, is not a Roy, yet, still in the extended family, and he’s got enough distance from the scandal. We could see the shareholders appointing Greg as CEO for the optics of a clean slate.
Greg’s Odds: Low
There are just too many players who are way more ruthless and business-savvy than Greg. So the only way I can see him as CEO is if he charms his way to the top. And, as I said, the chances of that happening are very low.