Rambus Fires CEO Ron Black for Unspecified Conduct Issue

(Bloomberg) -- Rambus Inc., a company that licenses semiconductor technology, said it fired Chief Executive Officer Ron Black after hearing of an incident in which his behavior fell short of the company’s standards.

Luc Seraphim, senior vice president and general manager of its memory and interface division, will step into the role while the board conducts a search for a replacement, the Sunnyvale, California-based company said Thursday in a statement. It didn’t specify what Black did to prompt his removal.

“The termination follows an incident unrelated to the company’s financial and business performance,” Rambus said in the statement.

While Rambus is a fraction of the size of Intel Corp., with a market capitalization of only $1.4 billion, the company joined its larger counterpart in dismissing its leader for a lapse in conduct. Intel fired Brian Krzanich last week after it discovered a past relationship with an employee that violated company policy.

Rambus has a past mired in controversy. It fought multiyear legal battles with the largest companies in the memory chip industry, including Samsung Electronics Co., trying to assert the bigger chipmakers stole its technology. It was also accused by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission of antitrust violations.

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