Sybase's chairman has resigned to head up rival Oracle's Internet software spin-off. Mitchell Kertzman will be named today as chief executive officer of Network Computer Inc (NCI).
NCI's biggest shareholders are Oracle and Netscape Communications, and it was originally set up to develop software for network computers.
While Kertzman has both been a competitor of Oracle at Sybase, and a vocal critic of its chairman Larry Ellison and his network compututer vision, NCI is now looking for additional investors, and has shifted its strategy to concentrate on providing software to help devices connect to the Web.
Kertzman is one of the more colourful characters in the IT industry, a former rock music DJ, who built up a business selling software development tools for Windows, into a company - Powersoft - which was bought by Sybase in a stock deal worth $900 million in 1995.
When Sybase hit financial problems the following year, he took over the reigns as CEO, and has helped make if profitable. He will be replaced as chairman by John Chen, whom he recruited to replace him as CEO.
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