Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC): Turnaround in Trouble?

by Paul Wilson | Monday, Mar 31, 2014 | 1296 views

Boston, MA 03/31/2014 (usastockreports) – Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC)’s turnaround is being seen as increasingly in trouble, following the company’s shock decision to fire its Chief Executive Officer and president, Mr. Steve Bennett after a period of only 18 months. Mr. Bennett had taken over from Mr. Enrique Salem in July 2012; Mr. Salem had been dismissed from the job after three years at the helm. Mr. Michael Brown, a board member of SYMC has been appointed as interim president and CEO.

Good beginning but trouble brewing

Although SYMC’s stock had gained nearly 50% on the whole from the time Mr. Bennet took over the CEO’s role to the time he was dismissed, the stock had been steadily in decline over the last six months, registering a 15% decline. Following Mr. Bennet’s dismissal, the stock crashed by almost 14% before recovering. SYMC’s stock closed at $19.79 as on March 28, 2014.

Reasons for firing unclear

As per the company’s official statement, the “considered decision” to fire Mr. Bennett was “the result of an ongoing deliberative process and not precipitated by any event or impropriety.” According to an unknown source who spoke to The New York Times, Mr. Bennett was fired on account of “not moving quickly enough to innovate on new products and growth initiatives.”

Turnaround expected to slow down, adding to SYMC’s woes

Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC) reported a 5% decline in revenues for the third quarter ended December 2013. Its main PC security and storage businesses have shown a continuing fall, while the company struggles to get a foothold in the mobile security market, which is expected to drive the next wave of growth for internet security companies like SYMC.

With the firing of the second CEO within a period of two years, the turnaround at SYMC is expected to take even longer, with the company fighting multiple battles such as increased competition and decline in PC sales. Symantec Corporation (NASDAQ:SYMC)’s efforts to shift its customer security business model from a one-time licensing model to a subscription based model have also stalled.

Finding a suitable replacement for Mr. Bennett is also expected to take some time, who in turn would require time to settle down in his new role.

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