By Nitin Dahad , EETimes (April 13, 2020)
When a CEO is abruptly removed from his position at the helm of a leading intellectual property (IP) company owned by Chinese investors, it certainly begs the questions, what next?
This is the question a lot of people in the U.K. technology industry are asking, when Imagination Technologies announced on Friday that its CEO, Ron Black, was stepping down with immediate effect from the company and the board – so immediate that they even removed him from the web site straight away.
This is surprising given the events of last week, when British government intervention put the brakes on an emergency board meeting at which four new directors representing China Reform Holdings, the owners of Imagination Technologies, were to be appointed [China Reform is the limited partner of Canyon Bridge, who bought out Imagination in 2017]. While it was understood that Black was to stay on as a result of winning that mini corporate boardroom battle, China Reform clearly wasn’t going to let this stop them.
On Friday, April 10th, only a few days after this first round of the battle, Imagination issued a statement saying Black was to go immediately and replaced by Ray Bingham as an interim CEO; Bingham is currently executive chairman and a partner at Canyon Bridge. But the same statement also stated the company was “committed to increasing its investment in the UK as it seeks continued growth in the USA, Europe and Asia.”
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