Another CIO Departure - InformationWeek

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IT Leadership // CIO Insights & Innovation
Commentary
11/14/2007
06:10 PM
John Soat
John Soat
Commentary
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Another CIO Departure

In an SEC filing, Orbitz, the online travel site, said its CIO is exiting the company. What's with the recent CIO shuffle?

In an SEC filing, Orbitz, the online travel site, said its CIO is exiting the company. What's with the recent CIO shuffle?In a Form 8-K filing Monday, Orbitz Worldwide said Bahman Koohestani "would be stepping down from his position as Chief Information Officer of the Company." No explanation was given, and no replacement named, but Orbitz said Koohestani "is expected to continue as [CIO] on a transitional basis until Dec. 7, 2007."

His corporate profile on the Orbitz Worldwide site says Koohestani had joined Orbitz in 2004, and that he had a sizable workload: "Mr. Koohestani is responsible for overseeing and managing the global technology delivery for both consumer and corporate online travel which includes software/application development, architecture, program management, infrastructure, and quality assurance."

A profile of Koohestani on Wikipedia says he had formerly run the messaging division at Netscape, and he was the co-founder of a software company called Delano, which was acquired by Divine in 2002. It also identifies him as the chief technology officer of Orbitz.

As almost everyone in the world knows by now, Microsoft announced the departure of its CIO, Stuart Scott, last week, but that was a little more sudden and certainly more dramatic than Orbitz's move: Scott was booted, effective immediately, for "violation of company policies," and two executives were tapped to assume his responsibilities until a replacement was named.

So why is the CIO position suddenly so volatile? OK, maybe I'm reading too much into this. It's three instances that make a trend, not two, right? And bad luck comes in threes. So when is the third shoe going drop? Let me know if you hear of another CIO leaving.

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