Juniper CEO Kheradpir resigns over misconduct allegations

Shaygan Kheradpir steps down from his role as CEO of Juniper Networks after less than a year in the post, after a customer negotiation went sour

Juniper Networks CEO Shaygan Kheradpir has quit his post less than a year after he was appointed, following allegations of misconduct in negotiations with a key customer.

In a brief statement, Juniper said Kheradpir stepped aside following “a review by the board of directors of his leadership and his conduct in connection with a particular negotiation with a customer”.

According to Forbes, he will have to pay back a substantial tranche of his $5m signing bonus.

Juniper made it clear the board forced the CEO to resign, noting that Kheradpir had a different perspective on the matter.

The board’s investigation into Kheradpir’s conduct should not impact any of its financial statements, said Juniper.

In its most recent set of quarterly numbers, the network hardware supplier and SDN cheerleader posted a 5% decline in revenues and recommitted to a $100m cost-reduction programme.

UK-born Kheradpir was appointed to the post of CEO after spending two years as global chief operations and technology officer at Barclays, where he transformed the bank’s innovation and technology agenda. Prior to that he was CTO at Verizon.

At Juniper, he spearheaded a charge towards cloud-based networking and the concept of “High IQ Networks”, defined by Kheradpir in a recent blog post as a “different, dynamic system approach” that, much like a biological nervous system, “self-configures based on what is needed from the network and what is the highest priority for the network at any moment in time”.

He also oversaw the sale of its Junos Pulse mobile security suite, and the creation of a joint development partnership with Wi-Fi supplier Aruba Networks, which will see the two firms converge their wired and wireless local-area network (LAN) technology to bring better performance and security management capabilities.

Internal replacement

Following Kheradpir’s resignation, Juniper was swift to announce the appointment of 17-year company veteran, Rami Rahim, to the post.

Previously executive vice-president and general manager of Juniper development and innovation, Rahim, who joined as employee number 32 and helped design Juniper’s first product – the M40 core router – was instrumental in the creation of Juniper’s flagship routing platform, MX, and its network operating system, Junos.

"I am honoured to be asked to lead Juniper – a company I have dedicated 17 years of my career to – at such an important time in our history," said Rahim. "Juniper employees have truly risen to the challenge this year and that has enabled us to make incredible progress in 2014, including sharpening our focus on the highest-growth segments of the market, optimising our organisational structure and improving cost management.

“The management team and I remain committed to our strategy and are excited about the opportunities that lie ahead for Juniper,” he said.

 

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