Greenfield Out as Avid CEO, Replaced by Louis Hernandez

Posted by Joe Zaller
Feb 11 2013

Avid announced that Gary Greenfield, the company’s Chairman of the Board, CEO, and President, has been replaced by Louis Hernandez.

Hernandez, who has been a director of Avid since 2008, was most recently Chairman and CEO of Open Solutions, Inc., a technology provider to financial institutions worldwide, which was acquired in January 2013 by Fiserv for $55m in cash and the assumption of $960m in debt.

As part of the changes, Avid has split Greenfield’s role among two people.  Hernandez will assume the role of CEO, and President, and George Billings who is currently a director of the company has assumed the position of Chairman.

Greenfield will continue to serve as a member of Avid’s Board of Directors.

According to an 8-K filing with the SEC, Greenfield, who received total compensation of $4.8 million as of fiscal 2011, has entered into a separation agreement with the Avid whereby in exchange for release of claims against the company he will receive “payment of his accrued benefits, salary continuation for twelve months in the aggregate amount of $1,014,000, a payment in respect of annual bonus of $1,123,200, payment in respect of COBRA premiums, outplacement services and thirteen months additional vesting on his outstanding time-vesting equity awards.”

Avid also said it has entered into a 5-year contract with Hernandez that includes an annual base salary of $650,000, an annual incentive bonus target equal to 100% of annual base salary, and a long term equity award consisting of time vesting stock options and restricted stock unit awards and performance vesting options.  As part of this contract, Hernandez received 100,000 time vesting options and 100,000 time vesting restricted stock unit awards, as well as 625,000 performance vesting options.

“It is an exciting opportunity to lead Avid at this very important juncture in the company’s history,” said Hernandez. “As the industry leader for more than 25 years, Avid continues to set the standard for non-linear-editing, media management, and collaboration in the audio, video, and broadcast markets. The company is well positioned for growth and global expansion in this fast-moving marketplace. It is exciting to be working with the Avid team, as we drive results and value for our customers, employees, and shareholders.”

Avid is one of the most storied names in the broadcast industry and the company has been at the forefront of technological innovation for 25 years.

However, the company has struggled to achieve profitability over the past several years and has gone through multiple rounds of layoffs.  Last year, Avid sold off its consumer audio and video businesses, which contributed $91m in revenue, for approximately $19m.  Most recently Avid posted a loss of $17.4m for the third quarter of 2012 as its revenue dropped 23 percent.

It will be interesting to see what changes will be made at the company under the new management structure.

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Related Content:

Avid 8-K Filing: Resignation of Mr. Greenfield; Appointment of Mr. Hernandez

Business Week: Gary Greenfield, Executive Profile

PE HUB: Fiserv Buys Open Solutions

Avid Divests Consumer Business, Announces 20 Percent Staff Reduction

Avid Posts $17.4 Million Loss in Q3 2012 as Revenue Drops 23 Percent

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