Symantec CEO Salem ousted for board chairman Bennett

As reports of sagging profits came out for the second quarter, the security software giant's board of directors decides to swap CEOs.

Steve Bennett

Symantec's CEO Enrique Salem stepped down today after the company's board of directors designated chairman of the board Steve Bennett as the new president and CEO.

This executive switch-over comes as the security software giant reported an abysmal year for revenue -- second-quarter growth was just 1 percent to $1.67 billion, and profits decreased by 10 percent to $172 million, according to Bloomberg.

"Enrique Salem has been a significant contributor during his 19 years' associated with Symantec, including the last three years as CEO," Bennett said in a statement. "While progress has been made over the last three years in many areas, it was the board's judgment that it was in the best interests of Symantec to make a change in the CEO."

As news of Salem's ousting came out earlier today, the company's shares jumped 14 percent, according to Bloomberg. It was the biggest one-day gain for Symantec in more than a decade.

"The board's decision to make a leadership change was not based on any particular event or impropriety but was instead made after ongoing consideration and a deliberative process," Symantec's newly-appointed lead director Dan Schulman said in the statement. "We are fortunate as a board to be able to name Steve as CEO and achieve continuity in leadership."

Bennett joined Symantec's board of directors in the beginning of 2010 and became chairman in 2011. Previously he was president and CEO of Intuit for seven years and before that he worked for General Electric for 23 years. According to Computer World, his new role as president and CEO of Symantec is permanent and not an interim position.

About the author

Dara Kerr, a freelance journalist based in the Bay Area, is fascinated by robots, supercomputers and Internet memes. When not writing about technology and modernity, she likes to travel to far-off countries.

 

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