HP CEO Mark Hurd Resigns Amid Sexual Harassment Scandal
HP announced today that its CEO would be stepping down effective immediately, and Chief Financial Officer Cathie Lesjak, 51, will take over as CEO on an interim basis.
The results of the investigation were not published with the announcement, although Hurd acknowledged he had exhibited behavior that went against his "standards and principles of trust, respect and integrity."
In the same announcement, and in an obvious move to offset the effects of this sudden exit, HP also represented a bullish view of the future by raising its full-year outlook for revenue and non-GAAP EPS.
Few details were available about the nature of the sexual harassment investigation. The company's General Counsel, Michael Holston, indicated there were clear ethical violations in an interview with Bloomberg.
Engadget reported that the company revealed during a conference call held today with investors and analysts regarding the announcements, that there appeared to be irregularities in the handling of expenses for an HP contractor, with whom Hurd had a relationship. An HP spokesperson on the call described the person this way: "This was a marketing contractor who worked from fall of 2007 through the fall of 2009 — she was never an HP employee."
HP stock is down in after-hours trading on the announcement, but closed up for the week as a whole.