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Legal battle resolved

HP and Lexmark finally resolve their legal dispute over senior executive who changed horses early last year.

Lexmark and HP have settled a year-long legal tussle over senior executive Bruce Dahlgren.

Dahlgren jacked in his six-year job as boss of Lexmark's North American printing solutions division at the start of 2006 to become worldwide head of enterprise sales at HP's imaging and printing arm.

Following his move, HP filed a lawsuit contesting the legality of the non-compete clause in Dahlgren's contract.

That prompted Lexmark to hit back with a countersuit and eventually resulted in a US court issuing an injunction that prevented Dahlgren from managing HP's business in North America for a period of 12 months.

As part of the settlement finally reached during the past month, Lexmark accepted that its former employee had satisfied the requirements of the order.

HP also agreed to pay Lexmark a sum of US$525,000 related to a provision in Dahlgren's contract that permitted him to repay certain gains from stock options. Dahlgren, meanwhile, has promised not to reveal any confidential or proprietary information or to poach staff or clients away from Lexmark.

Dahlgren's role at HP gives him responsibility for IPG's enterprise strategy and managing the company's top 1,500 accounts.

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