A research analyst and a former executive who revealed insider information about Apple’s sales have both been charged, reports Reuters. Analyst John Kinnucan on Friday was charged with two counts of securities fraud, two counts of conspiracy and one count of insider trading from a civil case filed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Between 2008 and 2010, Kinnucan allegedly paid insiders with cash, trips and other incentives for inside information regarding Apple. Kinnnucan then sold the information to hedge funds for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Separately, former SanDisk executive Don Barnetson pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and securities fraud. “I conspired with a consultant to provide confidential information with respect to my employer at the time, SanDisk Corp,” Barnetson said. Barnetson could faces up to five years in prison but could get leniency for his “substantial cooperation.” Kinnucan could faces up to 20 years in prison on each of the securities fraud counts and one of the conspiracy counts, and up to five years on the other conspiracy count. More →
Acer has filed a lawsuit against its former chief executive officer Gianfranco Lanci for allegedly violating a non-compete agreement. Lanci left Acer last March after the company hit a rough patch and was recently named head of Lenovo’s operations in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. “We believe Mr. Lanci has clearly breached the terms of the non-compete agreement he entered into willingly . . . we believe we have a very robust case,” Acer said in a statement given to the Financial Times. The Financial Times notes that Acer has fallen from the second to the fourth largest computer maker in the world while Lenovo has seen recent success and has risen to the No.2 spot. More →
BGR has exclusively learned that Hewlett-Packard Executive Vice President Todd Bradley is looking to leave HP. While HP reported last week that the company plans to discontinue its webOS smartphones and tablets and is interested in splitting off the PC business, we have heard that Todd Bradley has been considering a departure from HP for several months. “He’s out interviewing for every CEO job he can,” a source familiar with Bradley’s plans told us. With the drastic change in direction for HP, it’s not surprising to see that the leading internal choice for the CEO role, passed over for an outsider, is looking to leave the company. After all, it was Bradley who spearheaded the Palm acquisition and he has been very focused on turning HP into more of a consumer company, something that is now essentially out of the question. Read on for more. More →
One of our high-level AT&T sources just informed us that an AT&T Vice President has confirmed to several employees that the iPhone 5 is slated to launch in early October. Additionally, the VP communicated the following to a group of managers: “Expect things to get really, really busy in the next 35-50 days, so prepare your teams accordingly.” Apple is widely expected to announce the iPhone 5 in a late September event with a release set for early October.
Microsoft’s General Manager of the Windows Phone Developer Experience on Monday announced that he is leaving Microsoft to launch a start up. Kindel did not share the details of his new endeavor, and his public profile on networking site LinkedIn lists him as Founder and CTO of <redacted> at A super secret stealth startup. “[The start up] has to do with sports, advertising, mobile, social-networking, and, of course, the cloud,” Kindel wrote in a post on his personal blog. “I’m insanely excited to get started.” The soon-to-be former executive was with Microsoft for 21 years, having joined the Redmond-based company’s developer support group in 1990. Kindel’s full email to his team regarding the decision follows below. More →
BGR has learned that Research In Motion’s head of BlackBerry software may have left the company. Suresh Periyalwar, Senior Vice President of Handheld Software, had been with RIM since April 2001 when he joined as Director of Software Development. He came to the company from Nortel, where he managed CDMA-related development for more than five years. Periyalwar was promoted to SVP at RIM three years ago in May 2008 according to his LinkedIn profile, which still has him listed as a RIM employee. BGR has also learned from a trusted source that several additional key executives have been planning to leave on their own accord. (more
RIM’s stock is down more than 60% from its 12-month high of $70.54, and there is a great deal of unrest at the company’s headquarters in Waterloo, Ontario. BGR exclusively published an open letter from an anonymous senior executive at RIM late last month, which pleaded for the company’s top management to make several strategic changes in order to regain momentum and mind share in the smartphone market. A later expose, also published by BGR, painted a troubling picture of the smartphone vendor that once revolutionized the industry.
If Periyalwar did in fact leave the company as multiple sources have informed BGR, it might not bode well for RIM’s next-generation smartphones. The departure of RIM’s SVP of Handheld Software just ahead of the company’s transition to QNX could imply that the executive did not have confidence in RIM’s brand new platform. On the other hand, Periyalwar may have been pushed out in favor of fresh leadership in its software division ahead of the company’s QNX smartphone launches. RIM declined to confirm or deny the executive’s departure when reached for comment by BGR. Periyalwar could not be reached for comment.
BGR has exclusively learned that Horace Luke, former Chief Innovation Officer at HTC, has left the company as of April 30th 2011. “Horace Luke, HTC’s chief innovation officer, has left HTC for personal reasons. Horace nurtured a culture of innovation at HTC and instilled a strong consumer design-focus among our employees who continue to raise the bar in designing products that capture our customers’ imagination,” HTC told BGR in a statement. “We are grateful for Horace’s many contributions to HTC and wish him well in his future endeavors. Scott Croyle, HTC’s vice president of design, has taken over Horace’s responsibilities and will continue a tradition of design innovation at HTC.” Luke had been at HTC since November 2006 when he left his role as Creative Director at Microsoft to join the emerging Taiwan-based smartphone vendor. He was with Microsoft for a total of nine years, where he headed up the Creative departments for products including Xbox, Windows XP, Microsoft research and Windows Mobile.
Brian Wallace, the Vice President of digital marketing and media at Research In Motion, has reportedly left the BlackBerry maker for Samsung — the top cell phone company in the U.S. According to Advertising Age, Wallace will pick up at Samsung as Vice President of strategic marketing for the U.S. Instead of focusing on digital media, Wallace will also work on branding and offline media. Research In Motion announced its first-quarter earnings yesterday and missed analyst estimates for the quarter. The firm shipped 500,000 units of its new BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, but also said that it would have to reduce its workforce. More →
Notice anything different with Google today? No? Neither did we. As announced back in January, Google co-founder Larry Page re-assumed his role as CEO of the Internet search giant today. The company’s former CEO, Eric Schmidt, will move to the position of Executive Chairman. “We’ve been talking about how best to simplify our management structure and speed up decision making for a long time,” said Schmidt during the company’s Q4 earnings call back in January. “By clarifying our individual roles we’ll create clearer responsibility and accountability at the top of the company. In my clear opinion, Larry is ready to lead and I’m excited about working with both him and Sergey for a long time to come.” Page briefly held the position of CEO in 2001 before turning the reins over to the more seasoned Schmidt. More →
Ten days ago, Nokia’s head of MeeGo stepped down for “personal reasons.” Now, it appears as though the jettisoned executive, Ari Jaaksi, will take a position with HP/Palm as the senior vice president of webOS. AllThingsD reports that Jaaksi will assume his new role sometime in November. HP & Co. also added Victoria Coleman, former head of Samsung’s research and development center in San Jose, to their payroll. HP certainly is stacking their mobile division’s deck with seasoned, experienced executives from all corners of the industry. Let’s hope the moves bear fruit… and soon! More →