Corel's Woes Continue, CEO Steps Down

The much troubled software company Corel has just been dealt another major blow with the resignation of their President/CEO/Chairman of the Board, Michael Cowpland. Sighting the reason of wanting to spend more time on his other business ventures as the main reason for his resignation, Mr. Cowpland will still serve as a technical advisor for the company. According to Corel:

Dr. Michael Cowpland announced today his resignation as President, Chief Executive Officer and Chair of the Board of Corel Corporation (NASDAQ: CORL, TSE: COR) in order to dedicate his time and resources to new start-up opportunities. Dr. Cowpland will no longer be involved in the operations of the company but will continue as a director and as a technology advisor to Corel.

Mr. Derek J. Burney, formerly executive vice-president, engineering and chief technology officer of Corel has been appointed interim CEO and president. While holding the CEO title only on an interim basis, Mr. Burney will have full authority to execute strategies in consultation with a newly-established Board Committee.

"I am looking forward to dedicating more time to start-up ventures in the Linux arena. It is exciting to see major industry players like IBM, Dell, and Hewlett-Packard are endorsing Linux on the desktop. This further validates Corelis pioneering efforts to deliver Linux to the mainstream," said Dr. Cowpland. "I will continue to work closely with Corel and its affiliates and I have total confidence in Derekis ability to carry the company forward with vision, leadership and focus."

Mr. James Baillie and Mr. Larry OiBrien have been appointed to the Board of Directors following the acceptance of the resignation from the Board of Directors of Mr. William G. Davis for personal reasons. Mr. Baillie is Counsel to Torys. Mr. OiBrien is Chairman of CALIAN Technology Ltd.

Mr. Baillie has been appointed as Chair of the Board of Directors and Mr. Lyle Blair as Vice Chair.

The Board Committee, comprised of Messrs. Baillie, Blair, OiBrien and Mr. Hunter Grant, has been appointed to:

  • Conduct a search for a permanent CEO, with existing officers to be considered as candidates.
  • Review the composition of the Board of Directors.
  • Work with Mr. Burney, Mr. John Blaine, Corelis Chief Financial Officer, other members of the executive management and outside advisors as appropriate to refine the strategic direction of Corel.

Mr. Burney has been with Corel since 1993. During his time with the company, he has been responsible for the development of Corelis award-winning product line, including a wide range of productivity, graphics and Internet software for the corporate and retail markets, in addition to its line of Linux applications.

You can find more information at the Corel web site.