Unwired Planet Inc. (UPIP) said two executives hired with much fanfare in December 2011 to fortify its intellectual property business will resign effective July 1 in the first sign of incoming CEO Boris Teksler’s much anticipated overhaul of the patent monetization company.
Reno, Nevada-based Unwired Planet said today that Tim Robbins and Daniel Mendez on May 12 each notified the company of their plans to leave their positions as executive vice president and general managers of intellectual property division.
Teksler is scheduled to start June 1.
Shares of Unwired Planet fell 4.26%, or 2.6 cents, to 58 cents in afternoon trading. They’ve traded between 55 cents and $2.38 over the past year.
“On behalf of our board of directors, I would like to thank both Daniel and Tim for their years of dedication to Unwired Planet,” said Bill Marino, a director and member of the board’s IP committee.
“Boris will recruit to enhance the existing team and drive the intellectual property strategy to building a sustainable and profitable business.”
Officials at Unwired Planet couldn’t be reached fro additional comment.
Robbins and Mendez joined Unwired Planet in December 2011 when it was still called Openwave Systems Inc. and reported to then CEO Mike Mulica who left the company in May 2013.
The company highlighted Mendez and Robbins work together at Good Technology, where they executed some $350 million in licensing transactions.
“We continue to make strides in our intellectual property business, evidenced by our recent licensing agreement with Microsoft,” Mulica said at the time. “The addition of Tim and Daniel positions Openwave with a world class team that will chart the strategy to accelerate and broaden our IP initiatives.”
Unwired Planet has been struggling to make a profit since acquiring a portfolio of 2,150 patents from Ericsson that many believe made it all but impossible for Unwired Planet to monetize its patents.
The much criticized deal required Unwired Planet to pay Ericsson up to 20% of the first $100 million it receives in licensing agreements, 50% of the next $400 million and 70% of any amounts above $500 million.
The company is counting on Teklser, a senior executive from Technicolor SA, a technology provider to media and entertainment sectors, to try to restructure that deal.
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