Symantec CEO Leaves Company

MOUNTAIN VIEW — Symantec Corporation Greg Hill has resigned as CEO and President of the company after disappointing fourth-quarter earnings.

The company announced the following leadership changes:

  • Richard S. Hill, current Symantec director and former Chairman and CEO of Novellus Systems, has been appointed Interim President and Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Hill succeeds Greg Clark, who has stepped down as President and CEO and as a member of the Symantec Board, also effective immediately. The Company will commence a search process to find a permanent CEO.
  • Vincent Pilette, CFO of Logitech and former VP of Finance for Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s server, storage and networking business, has been appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Symantec. He is anticipated to join the Company on May 21, 2019. Mr. Pilette’s appointment follows a comprehensive search process initiated in connection with Nicholas Noviello’s departure as EVP and CFO as announced on January 31, 2019.

“We achieved company revenue in the fourth quarter in line with guidance and generated strong cash flow from operating activities,” said Richard S. Hill, Symantec Interim President and CEO. “Our Consumer Cyber Safety segment continued to deliver solid results, and we were pleased with increases in average revenue per user, both year-over-year and sequentially. However, our Enterprise Security revenue was below our guidance range due to lower than expected bookings, which led to year-over-year reported billings declining greater than we anticipated. Despite this weakness, we remain confident in our Integrated Cyber Defense strategy, which has produced a strong and competitive product portfolio. Moving forward, in Enterprise Security we are focused on operational discipline, increasing sales productivity, expanding operating margins and managing the shift to our ratable cloud delivered solutions. In Consumer Cyber Safety we will continue to execute on multiple initiatives to drive revenue growth. With industry-leading solutions across both our enterprise and consumer businesses, we are optimistic that we are well positioned to execute against a growing opportunity in the cyber defense market.”

Daniel H. Schulman, Chairman of the Symantec Board of Directors, said, “Symantec has a significant opportunity to further enhance shareholder value by continuing to build on the leadership and momentum of both our Enterprise and Consumer Cyber Safety segments. As we enter into a new financial year, Greg and the Board agreed that now is the right time to transition leadership, and we are confident in Rick’s ability to drive the Company forward while we work to identify a permanent CEO.”

Mr. Schulman continued, “Rick is a highly-regarded technology executive with a track record in enterprise computing solutions, and decades of experience leading public companies in the semiconductor and systems industries. His years of relevant leadership experience coupled with his familiarity with our organization make him a natural fit for the Interim CEO role and will allow him to seamlessly take on the responsibilities.”

Mr. Hill, who has served as a Director since January 2019 and who has been named Interim President and CEO of Symantec, said, “I’d like to thank Greg Clark and the full team at Symantec, who have done an outstanding job of building a strategy and solutions that defend enterprises and consumers from the ever increasing cyber threat landscape. Symantec is the only company in the world with a platform built on extensive cyber telemetry and advanced cyber analytics to dynamically defend and inoculate its customers against sophisticated cyber attacks. I look forward to working closely with the Board and management team in executing on the market opportunity within cyber security and am proud to lead Symantec during this interim time while we transition to permanent leadership in the Company.”

Mr. Schulman added, “The Board extends its deep appreciation to Greg for his leadership and contributions to our Company since becoming CEO. He has led Symantec through a time of great transformation, including the combination with Blue Coat and the acquisition of LifeLock, which redefined the cybersecurity landscape. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”

Mr. Clark, who has served as CEO since Symantec’s acquisition of Blue Coat in 2016, said, “It has been a privilege to lead this great organization and I am proud of all that the team has accomplished in nearly three years. Together, we’ve built a large installed base of customers and brought to market some of the world’s most powerful cyber defense solutions. As Symantec enters its next phase of growth and value creation, it is the right time for the Board to identify the next generation of leadership. With Rick as Interim President and CEO and a world class team in place, I have no doubt this will be a seamless transition for our customers, partners, employees and shareholders.”

Mr. Pilette, who currently serves as CFO of Logitech and has been appointed Symantec’s new EVP and CFO, said, “I join Symantec with a deep background in operations and as an investor in the Company. Symantec is known for its R&D strengths, its iconic brands, and the breadth of its portfolio, and I am eager to work with the management team to drive growth across our Enterprise and Consumer segments and deliver value to our customers, partners and shareholders. Having met Rick three years ago, I continue to be impressed by his focus on operational excellence and strong record of execution. I am very pleased to be joining him and the entire team as we work to enhance our financial and operational discipline, and improve our results and margins.”

Mr. Hill continued, “Having participated in the CFO search process in my capacity as a Board member, I am delighted to welcome Vincent to Symantec. In addition to his financial and operational acumen, he brings a proven track record of driving results throughout his decades-long career as a financial executive in the technology industry, across our Enterprise and Consumer segments. I look forward to working with Vincent and know he will be an excellent partner to me and the management team both during this interim period and for the long term.”

Mr. Hill added, “During the CEO search process and beyond, we will benefit from our deep bench of leaders, including Art Gilliland and Samir Kapuria, to help maintain continuity and leadership across our Enterprise and Consumer organizations. As Symantec continues to execute our strategy for these pivotal business segments, I can think of no two better leaders than Art and Samir to continue driving results and ensuring we achieve the goal of making our cyber world a safer place.”

Following the changes announced today, the size of Symantec’s Board has decreased from 13 to 12 members, 11 of whom are independent.