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Maxtor CFO quits

Maxtor’s recently appointed chief financial officer (CFO), Michael Bless, has quit less than two months into his new role, citing ‘personal reasons’ as the driving force behind his decision.

Maxtor’s recently appointed chief financial officer (CFO), Michael Bless, has quit less than two months into his new role, citing ‘personal reasons’ as the driving force behind his decision.

The surprise announcement, coming less than a week before Maxtor releases its third quarter financial results on October 20th, is effective immediately. The hard disk drive vendor’s share price fell more than 17% last Friday on the New York Stock Exchange, wiping more than US$200m off Maxtor’s market capitalisation.

Maxtor has named president and CEO Paul Tufano as acting CFO and has launched the search for a permanent replacement. Numerous people have held the position of CFO at Maxtor during the last year. Robert Edwards resigned from the position in March and was replaced on a temporary basis by Theodore Hull. Bless replaced Hull when he took on the CFO position in late August.

Bless’s responsibilities at Maxtor included finance, accounting, treasury, investor relations and IT functions. Bless joined Maxtor from Rockwell Automation having spent ten years prior to that position in investment banking working in a variety of areas including M&A, equities, fixed income and restructurings.

Hard disk drive vendors have had a difficult year with the sector blighted by supply and demand issues and falling prices. The traditional big three of Maxtor, Seagate and Western Digital have also had to contend with the growing presence of Far East vendors such as Samsung and Hitachi GST.

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