Hewlett Packard are in the press for all the wrong reasons lately and now they have launched a lawsuit to stop ex CEO Mark Hurd from moving to Oracle. Experts have said that this is going to be a difficult lawsuit for them to win because the California courts generally allow employees to move freely.
HP have said that if Mark Hurd worked as an Oracle president then it would be ‘impossible' for him to avoid passing over trade secrets and confidential information. Mark Lemley, a professor at Stanford Law School said “Neither will California courts enforce a noncompete agreement. HP will have to show real evidence that Mark Hurd is about to use its secrets at Oracle.”
This lawsuit is nothing new in such circles as high profile companies have clashed over hiring in the past. One company will be very wary of leaders moving companies and taking all their sensitive information with them.
Outspoken CEO Larry Ellison who has already called the HP board ‘idiots‘ for letting Hurd go has said that the lawsuit is ‘vindictive' and that this move will make it harder for the two companies to work together in the future. “Oracle has long viewed HP as an important partner,” Ellison said. “The HP board is acting with utter disregard for that partnership, our joint customers, and their own shareholders and employees. The HP Board is making it virtually impossible for Oracle and HP to continue to cooperate.”
Hurd “was privy to the most sensitive of HP trade secret and confidential information,” HP said.
The legal wranglings continue and we will keep you updated as information breaks.