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Hurd gives up $30m to settle HP lawsuit

Microscope contributor

HP has settled its legal battle with former CEO Mark Hurd after he agreed to give up about $30m (£19.3m) of his severance package to join rival Oracle.

According to an SEC filing, HP said it had "resolved litigation" that it began this month against Hurd for alleged breach of contract and mishandling of trade secrets a day after he was made an Oracle president by pal Larry Ellison.

"As part of that resolution, HP and Mr Hurd agreed to modify the terms of the Separation Agreement and Release entered into between them on August 6," the filing stated.

This means that Hurd has agreed to "waive his rights" to the 330,177 performance based restricted stock options granted in January 2008 and the 15,853 time-based restricted stock units awarded in December 2009.

Hurd will maintain "obligations to protect HP's confidential information while fulfilling his responsibilities at Oracle," the companies said.

His five year reign at HP came to an abrupt end last month following an investigation into allegations of sexual harassment made by a former marketing contractor, which actually discovered he had falsified expenses.

Oracle CEO Ellison laid into HP's Board, claiming they had made the biggest mistake since Apple got rid of Steve Jobs in the 1980s. He later offered Hurd a senior role at the company.

Hurd addressed partners at Oracle's OpenWorld this week, assuring them that Oracle was a product based business, and would not compete with them selling services to mid-market customers.

"Partners have the ability to specialise across the portfolio to build services around it and grow markets we don't get to - with complete solutions we don't have in our basket," said Hurd.

"When they do, they will find a supportive Oracle ready to help them succeed. When we align products and solutions as a group, we become more powerful," he added.

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