The many CEOs of Symantec

By Saheli Sen Gupta May 19th 2016

Since John Thompson’s exit from the company, Symantec has been struggling to find a CEO. Read on to know the company’s ups and downs under its many CEOs.

  • Since John Thompson’s exit from the company, Symantec has been struggling to find a CEO. Read on to know the company’s ups and downs under its numerous CEOs.

  • He was the only African-American boss at a major US IT firm at that time. Under his leadership, Symantec undertook more than 30 acquisitions and also merged with Veritas Software, which is the largest IT merger till date.

  • Salem had already been with Symantec for well over a decade before his appointment as the CEO. Under his guidance, the company acquired Verisign for $1 billion, which increased their market share by a considerable margin. However, he was abruptly fired on account of the company’s disappointing earnings performance and replaced by Steve Bennet in October 2012.

  • Formerly the CEO of Intuit, Steve Bennet made some major reorganizations in the company in order to reduce costs and improve the company’s product line, possibly to replicate General Electric’s model of being more product-focussed. He was fired in March 2014, less than two years after his appointment. 

  • Brown was initially appointed as the interim president and CEO in April 2014 and later made full CEO in September. Under his control, the company bifurcated in January 2016 – Symantec and Veritas – in order to focus more on security and sold Veritas to The Carlyle Group for $8 billion. In April 2016, Brown stepped down and Ajei Gopal became the interim president and COO.

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