Preparing for split, Palm names new hardware CEO

In a widely anticipated move, Palm Inc. named a new chief executive officer (CEO) for its hardware business Tuesday after releasing 2002 fiscal fourth-quarter results that were in line with expectations.

Todd Bradley, current president and chief operating officer of the Palm Solutions Group, will become CEO of that group effective Sept. 1 and will join the Palm board of directors in July.

Palm is currently in the process of splitting its hardware and software business into two separate companies, and the appointment places Bradley at the head of the hardware business.The company's software unit, PalmSource, is headed by David Nagel. Both Bradley and Nagel will report to Palm CEO and Chairman of the Board Eric Benhamou, who will remain in his position until the software and hardware businesses are separated into two companies. At the time of the split, the position of Palm CEO will be eliminated and Benhamou will continue in his roles as chairman of the board for both Palm Solutions Group and PalmSource.

The executive shuffling came after the Santa Clara, California, company reported fiscal fourth quarter results that met revised expectations. Palm reported a net loss of US$27.5 million for the quarter ended May 31, or $0.05 a share. This compares to a net loss of $392 million, or $0.69 a share in the year-ago quarter.

Stock in the company traded down 1.32 percent midday Wednesday to $1.56 a share.

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