Critical Path Reshuffles Management Following Accounting Irregularities

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Critical Path Inc., a provider of messaging and e-mail software and services, said it is making sweeping changes to its management that it said will help it to return to its "core vision and values."


The changes come as the company faces numerous class-action lawsuits stemming from its announcement Feb. 2 that its accounting practices "put into question" its fourth-quarter 2000 financial results.


Critical Path said Feb. 9 that CEO Doug Hickey had stepped down and that two executives previously put on administrative leave, president David Thatcher and William Rinehart, vice president of worldwide sales, had been fired. The company also said David Hayden, its chairman and founder, had been named executive chairman.


"My job is to reaffirm the core vision and values that have made this company great and resolve the issues that have recently come to light," Hayden said.


Additionally, Diana Whitehead, senior vice president of engineering and operations, was promoted to president. Lisa Gansky, a director, was named executive director and will take on expanded duties.


Critical Path said earlier this month that it had formed a special committee to look into financial irregularities after it unexpectedly lost $11.5 million in the fourth quarter. The company initially projected that it would attain profitability in the fourth quarter.

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