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8/9/2006
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3Com CEO Exits After Seven-Month Tenure

Former 3Com exec Edgar Masri will replace Scott Murray, who said the time commitment involved in managing 3Com's China partnership took him away from his family too often.

3Com has named a new CEO to replace Scott Murray, who is resigning after just seven months on the job.

Edgar Masri, a former 3Com executive, is slated to replace Murray starting at the end of next week, 3Com said late Tuesday. Masri currently serves as COO for broadband technology company Redline Communications.

Murray, who replaced Bruce Claflin as president and CEO in January, is resigning effective Aug. 17 because the time commitment required in China to manage 3Com's joint venture with Chinese networking vendor Huawei Technologies proved too great, according to 3Com.

3Com also said it plans to seek an increased stake in the joint venture, in which the company now owns a 51 percent share.

"After gaining additional insight into the significant time commitment and attention necessary to successfully manage H-3C, Scott Murray advised the board that, with his young family, he was not able to commit to the extended time in China the venture requires," 3Com Chairman Eric Benhamou said in a statement. "He therefore believes it is in 3Com's best interest for him to resign at this time, before negotiations begin. The board respects his decision and thanks Scott for taking steps to bring the company closer to profitability."

Marlborough, Mass.-based 3Com said Masri also will take on Murray's role as chairman of the Huawei-3Com joint venture.

Masri, who plans to join 3Com on Aug. 18, previously spent six years as a general partner at venture-capital firm Matrix Partners. Before that, he spent 15 years at 3Com in various senior management positions, including as senior vice president and general manager of the company's former Network Systems Business Unit and president of 3Com Ventures.

In another executive move, 3Com named Bob Mao executive vice president of corporate development to manage the company's interests in the China-based joint venture. Mao, who also will join 3Com on Aug. 18, will be a member of the venture's board and will report to Masri. He formerly was president and CEO of greater China operations at Nortel Networks, a post he held for nine years.

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