The former AMD CEO and current GlobalFoundries Chairman, Hector Ruiz, has announced he will be stepping down from his role as of January 4th, 2010 and taking a voluntary leave of absence effective immediately.
The statement is speculated to be a result of Mr.Ruiz ties to the Galleon Group, one of the world’s largest hedge funds which was recently accused and currently being investigated for insider trading. The former CEO is the most prominent figure of the tech community to be included in the criminal activity which includes Intel executive Rajiv Goel along with IBM VP and speculated up coming CEO Robert Moffat.
Ruiz is suspected of having passed private information to traders regarding the then upcoming spin-off of AMD’s chip manufacturing business to the subsidiary company, GlobalFoundries, which he was to head. While the information did lead to a temporary 8.5% jump in earnings, AMD’s stock has been in a downward free-fall so it is unlikely that the group or Ruiz himself profited from deal. Profit or no profit, insider trading is illegal, and the indictment being handed out are “in violation of duties and trust and confidence” despite the fact that Mr.Ruiz likely never earned a penny.
No charges have been officially filed against Ruiz, however U.S Securities and Exchange Commission – the investigating agency – alluded to pending charges against an “unnamed” AMD defendant. AMD Co-founder and former CEO, Jerry Sanders commented to the San Hose Mercury News, “It just doesn’t make sense, People make dumb mistakes — talk show hosts having sex with subordinates, at least I understand the sex drive. I don’t understand this. You just don’t talk about things that aren’t public. You don’t talk to people about insider information, whether you benefit from it or not.”
Hector Ruiz has been credited with improving AMD’s image to turn them into a competitive company during the start of his tenure and was influential in purchasing ATI. Replacing him will be Alan E. Ross, who served as president and CEO of Broadcom.