Risk & Compliance

Ousted Atmel CEO Fires Back

Fired, along with three other executives, for an alleged misuse of travel funds, the CEO of Atmel responds by seeking the removal of five directors...
Stephen TaubAugust 7, 2006

Atmel Corp. Monday announced that its board of directors fired CEO George Perlegos, executive vice president Gust Perlegos, and two other executives following an independent investigation into allegations regarding the misuse of corporate travel funds.

George Perlegos and Gust Perlegos were also asked to resign as directors.

The other two executives — who were not named in the announcement — were general counsel and the vice president of planning and information technology. The company’s website identifies those two men as Michael Ross and Mikes Sisois, Ph.D., respectively.

Steven Laub, currently an Atmel director, was appointed president and chief executive officer, effective immediately.

Atmel also said that the announcement is unrelated to the company’s July 25 announcement that the board’s audit committee, together with independent legal counsel and independent accounting consultants, is conducting an investigation regarding the timing of past stock option grants and other potentially related issues.

It added that the probe is ongoing and will cause the company to miss its deadline the extended due date for filing its June quarterly report.

In a separate press release issued 45 minutes after the company’s announcement, George Perlegos asserted that the terminations “are unlawful and improper, and that the grounds cited for the purported terminations are baseless.” That release added that an action seeking a determination they George and Gust Perlegos are entitled to their respective offices has been brought in Delaware Chancery Court.

In addition, George Perlegos said he called a special meeting of Atmel’s stockholders, as permitted under Atmel’s Bylaws, with the goal of removing five directors, including Laub.

The meeting is scheduled for Oct. 5, “or such other date as Atmel’s board may fix.”

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