Symantec makes leadership change, reports drop in income

Security vendor Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC) made a minor change to its leadership structure Wednesday as it reported a 12 per cent decline in net income for its third fiscal quarter.

Symantec’s board decided to split the roles of chairman of the board and CEO, meaning it needed a new chairman. The board elected director Dan Schulman to the role of non-executive chairman, with Steve Bennett retaining the titles of president and CEO.

“The board and I agree that having an independent director serve as the non-executive chairman is in the best interests of our shareholders,” said Bennett, in a statement. “Separating the positions of chairman and CEO allows me to focus on executing the company’s strategic plan and managing the company’s operations and performance. It enhances the board’s independent oversight of the company’s senior management team and enables better communications and relations between the board, the CEO and other senior management segments of the company.”

Schulman may best be known as a former president and CEO of Priceline, but he also led American Express’ Enterprise Growth and was CEO of Virgin Mobile USA.

Meanwhile, Symantec also released its financial reports for the third quarter of its fiscal 2013 (ended Dec. 28, 2012), reporting net income of $212 million, a decline of 12 per cent from net income of $240 million in the same quarter one year ago. Revenue reached $1.79 billion, up four per cent year over year.

“Strength in EMEA, information management and license revenue drove our FX adjusted organic revenue growth of four per cent,” said James Beer, executive vice president and chief financial officer, Symantec, in a statement. “Our better than expected top line growth coupled with disciplined expense management drove non-GAAP operating margins of 25.6% even as we are investing in certain areas to better serve our customer needs.”

Storage and server management accounted for 37 per cent of Symantec’s revenue, followed by the consumer business at 30 per cent and security and compliance segment at 39 per cent.

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Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras
A veteran technology and business journalist, Jeff Jedras began his career in technology journalism in the late 1990s, covering the booming (and later busting) Ottawa technology sector for Silicon Valley North and the Ottawa Business Journal, as well as everything from municipal politics to real estate. He later covered the technology scene in Vancouver before joining IT World Canada in Toronto in 2005, covering enterprise IT for ComputerWorld Canada. He would go on to cover the channel as an assistant editor with CDN. His writing has appeared in the Vancouver Sun, the Ottawa Citizen and a wide range of industry trade publications.

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