Former HP CEO Hurd Accused of Sharing Secret Buyout Plans
Jodie Fisher, whose relationship with Mark Hurd helped bring about his ouster as the CEO of Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), claimed in a letter from her attorney that Hurd shared information about HP's buyout of Electronic Data Systems before it was made public.
This and other information about the relationship was uncovered in an investigation by the Wall Street Journal. The report says the the HP board lost confidence in Hurd as it discovered that what he told them and the counsel they hired to look into the matter was not true.
Hurd indicated early in the board's investigation that he did not know Fisher well. The Journal reports that the board learned otherwise. "In one previously undisclosed example: The CEO had told directors he didn't know Ms. Fisher acted in adult movies, say people briefed on the matter, but investigators hired by H-P learned he had visited Web pages showing her in pornographic scenes, including a site called "erotic4u.com."' Hurd also saw Fisher numerous times, something he did not admit to the board.
Perhaps what most concerned the board in the June 29 letter from Fisher's attorney Gloria Allred was the accusation that Hurd told Fisher in early 2008 about HP's plans to buy IP consulting firm EDS. The information would not have been public at that time. The $13.9 billion deal was announced in May.
The Journal account says that some directors supported Hurd through most of the investigation, but decided to make the vote to remove him unanimous just before he resigned on August 6.