Consumer electronics retailer Best Buy Co. Inc. (BBY: Quote) said Monday that Chairman Richard Schulze will retire from the position, with long time director, Hatim Tyabji, succeeding him on June 21.
After Schulze steps down, he will move on to an honorary position of Founder and Chairman Emeritus, and will also serve out the remainder of his term as director through June 2013.
Tyabji is currently the chairman of the audit committee, and has served as a director of the company since 1998.
"Hatim's history of leadership combines technology, retail, financial and mobile experience at the most senior levels,. He has founded companies, chaired and served on boards and successfully led enterprises through long-term growth and change. The Board is grateful for his many years of service and is pleased to expand his role to Chairman," Lead independent director Matthew Paull said in a statement.
Schulze's move to step down came after results of an independent probe into personal conduct allegations involving former CEO Brian Dunn were publicly released.
The probe results revealed that Schulze acted inappropriately when he failed to bring the matter to the Audit Committee of the board in December 2011, when the allegations against Dunn were first raised with him.
"In December, when the conduct of our then-CEO was brought to my attention, I confronted him with the allegations (which he denied), told him his conduct was totally unacceptable and contrary to Best Buy's policies and everything I, and the Company, stand for. I understand and accept the findings of the Audit Committee," Schulze stated.
Meanwhile, the results of the probe on Dunn further revealed that the former CEO "violated company policy by engaging in an extremely close personal relationship with a female employee that negatively impacted the work environment."
According to the probe results, though Dunn's relationship with the female employee demonstrated extremely poor judgment and a lack of professionalism, there was no misuse of company resources or even aircraft.
Dunn resigned on April 10 prior to the completion of the investigation. He left the company after serving it for the past 28 years. Director Mike Mikan is currently serving as the interim CEO, while a four-member CEO search committee searches for a new CEO.
Richfield, Minnesota-based Best Buy, which is also known as the 'big blue box' because of the prominent design on Best Buy stores, earlier said the CEO search is expected to take six to nine months to complete.
Dunn was credited with driving the company's strategy to deliver superior product selection, services and customer experience. His contributions have led to steady improvements in Best Buy's market share growth and customer satisfaction levels.
Dunn was named CEO in 2009 after being president and chief operating officer since 2006, and executive vice president of U.S. Retail, president of Retail from 2004 to 2006. Dunn started his Best Buy career as a sales associate in 1985.
In Monday's regular trading session, BBY is currently trading at $19.65, up $0.37 or 1.91% on a volume of 3.28 million shares. In the past 52-week period, the stock has been trading in a range of $19.23 to $32.85.
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by RTT Staff Writer
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