California court backs EMC: Former exec can't oversee HP's storage ops

A California Superior Court Judge today sided with EMC Corp. to bar one of its former top executives from overseeing the storage technology business unit at Hewlett-Packard Co.

David Donatelli, formerly president of EMC's Storage Division, originally filed the civil suit in California -- where HP is located -- in order to negate his noncompete clause with Massachusetts-based EMC so that he could take over as HP's executive vice president for enterprise servers, storage and networking.

The California judge said Donatelli can work for HP, but can not oversee any storage development operations. This latest ruling follows a similar one by a Massachusetts court that ruled on a lawsuit filed by EMC. That court ruled that Donatelli could not avoid his noncompete clause in terms of storage technology development but could work for HP in other capacities.

Donatelli abruptly jumped ship in late April to work for HP.

After the Massachusetts' court ruling, HP announced Donatelli would take over as as executive vice president of Enterprise Servers and Networking.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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