HP Chairman Ray Lane Resigns

Pulkit Chandna

Had become unpopular among shareholders for his role in the costly Autonomy acquisition debacle

The fallout from Hewlett-Packard’s ill-advised $11.3 billion acquisition of British software company Autonomy continued on Thursday as the company’s Chairman Raymond Lane, the man seen as the controversial deal’s chief proponents by shareholders, put in his papers.

Ray Lane’s resignation comes a few months after the troubled PC vendor announced an $8.8 billion writedown related to the 2011 acquisition and said that as much as $5 billion was on account of “serious accounting improprieties, misrepresentation and disclosure failures discovered by an internal investigation by HP and forensic review into Autonomy’s accounting practices prior to its acquisition by HP.”

"After reflecting on the stockholder vote last month, I've decided to step down as executive chairman to reduce any distraction from HP's ongoing turnaround," Lane, who will stay on the company’s board, said in statement. "Since I joined HP's board a little over two years ago, I've been committed to board evolution to ensure our turnaround and future success."

G. Kennedy Thompson and John Hammergren, two other directors who recently got re-elected to the company’s board by narrow margins, are also on their way out. In February, investors appealed to Hewlett-Packard’s shareholders to vote against the two gentlemen , blaming them for the “strategic and governance challenges” facing the company.

Ralph Whitworth, an activist investor who joined the company’s board in 2011, has been appointed the company’s interim chairman.

Image Credit: HP

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