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Symantec Fires CEO Steve Bennett 111

Posted by samzenpus
from the moving-on dept.
wiredmikey (1824622) writes "Symantec on Thursday announced that CEO Steve Bennett was terminated by the security company and has been replaced by Michael Brown as interim president and CEO. Bennett, who also resigned from Symantec's board of directors, took the top position at Symantec in July 2012, after former president and CEO Enrique Salem was pushed out by the Board of Directors. In April 2013, Bennett, told attendees at its own Vision Conference, that the company was changing, and acknowledged that Symantec 'lacked strategy' when it came to dealing with acquisitions. His plan was to move the company forward slowly, but consistently and make Symantec easier to do business with. That strategy, or at least the execution of it, hasn't impressed the board of directors, it seems."
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Symantec Fires CEO Steve Bennett

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  • Impossible job (Score:5, Insightful)

    by symbolset (646467) * on Thursday March 20, 2014 @06:51PM (#46539511) Journal
    Growing sales in a shrinking market is hard enough. Doing it with Symantec software is plain impossible. Not getting a share of mobile? The mobile platforms have whitelist app stores and app isolation that make their software both unnecessary and impossible to implement.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @07:51PM (#46539851) Journal
    Unfortunately, Symantec seems to have a bit of the reverse Midas touch going on: they aquire a formerly promising company, it turns to shit, much less any attempts at internal development.

    PGP: is it cool? Definitely, noble lineage, strong encryption for the masses, etc. Has Symantec done anything worth mentioning, aside from (perhaps, this is Symantec here) compatibility updates since they bought it? Crickets. (And, as for the hardware token, fully integrated USB ones are nice; but smartcards are pretty much 100% commodified, and designed to securely store private keys, so even a hardware token would bring little more than convenience to the table). Backup Exec is fiddly, undistinguished, and nontrivially expensive, and just isn't looking any better with age. The Altiris acquisition, while minor in the grand scheme of their operations, they utterly fucked up(take a formerly relatively niche product; but a niche product with a niche, and turn it into a shitty attempt at being a competitor to MS SMS? What could go wrong?).

    Honestly, the only surprising thing about Symantec's 'strategy' is that it isn't hurting them more. They haven't developed anything worth buying out of the bargain bin in god-knows-how-long, and they manage to impart nontrivial negative value to anybody they buy almost immediately. Take them out back, shoot them, and give the money back to the shareholders...
  • "What severance package?"

    $14 million, apparently. See this WSJ article: Symantec Fires CEO Steve Bennett [wsj.com]. How will he live? Should we donate some money to keep him off the street?

    Have you called Symantec in the last 2 years? Or gotten emails from Symantec support? My experience was that everyone with whom I talked was amazingly disfunctional. That's what the Symantec CEO meant when he said [computerworld.com], "Our system is just broken".

    Symantec has contracts with the U.S. government. People in the U.S. government don't seem to me to understand much about the technology. I'm guessing the contracts are a waste of tax money.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @09:34PM (#46540295) Journal
    I don't know whether or not it will actually save Windows Phone whatever version, markets have traditionally been rather cruel to everyone except the first one or two vendors, and the OEM cloneshops who scrape by on margins that wouldn't even keep the lights on at some fancy corporate campus; but MS' takeover of Nokia looks far better executed than their takeover of Danger.

    With Danger, they shelled out substantial money for a formerly fairly vigorous company and turned it into... 'Project Pink', while simultaneously pissing off Verizon, probably the single most powerful carrier in the US, and wasting substantial amounts of time reinventing the wheel because Sidekicks didn't run WinCE and that was ideologically unacceptable. They then went on to one of the fastest launch-to-cancellation cycles in contemporary history. Then, just to add injury to insult, they lost all their existing sidekick customers' data in a high-profile fiasco that highlighted the downsides of the cloud-centric model they were hoping to promote(and probably didn't endear them any further to carriers who had been selling Danger handsets by the boatload in the past). Good job on that one, guys.

    With Nokia, by contrast, they picked up a respected hardware OEM to serve as their lead design vassal for phones shipping with their OS, killed off Nokia's remaining attempts to build or modernize their own OS, and all for a relative pittance. Made Google's Motorola buy look like amateur improv comedy hour.

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