Ex HP CEO Forgoes Severance; Lawsuit Avoided

In a very interesting turn of events, Mark Hurd, the beleaguered former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, has decided to walk away from approximately $30 million in stock as part of his severance package in order to pursue a newly created position at Oracle. In return, HP has withdrawn the lawsuit against Oracle, part of which stated Mr. Hurd would be violating the terms of his severance agreement if he accepted the position.

From SFGate:

HP and Oracle Corp. today reaffirmed their long-term strategic partnership and the resolution of litigation regarding Mark V. Hurd’s employment at Oracle. While the terms of the settlement are confidential, Mr. Hurd will adhere to his obligations to protect HP’s confidential information while fulfilling his responsibilities at Oracle. The agreement also reaffirms HP and Oracle’s commitment to delivering the best products and solutions to their more than 140,000 shared customers.

This situation seems to have wrapped itself up in a nice crisp bow despite the fact that Non-Compete Clauses are considered unenforceable in California (where the above took place).

Granted this situation involved executives at the highest level of a publicly held company, but I can’t help but wonder how all this will affect the issue of non-competition with those employees who cannot walk away from their assuredly-less-than-$30-million severance packages to move to another job?

I’m hoping not at all.