Rob Glaser returns as CEO of RealNetworks
Thomas Nielsen is out at Seattle's RealNetworks.
Seattle Times senior technology writer
The revolving door at RealNetworks continues to spin.
RealNetworks Chief Executive Thomas Nielsen resigned Tuesday, less than a year after the former Adobe executive took over the Seattle media-technology company.
Founder and Chairman Rob Glaser is taking the helm again, as interim chief executive until Nielsen's permanent replacement is found.
"The board and Thomas mutually agreed that the CEO position wasn't the right fit," Glaser said in the announcement.
Nielsen had barely unpacked. He took the job in November. Real Networks didn't finalize his 2012 compensation plan until May 9.
Nielsen's predecessor, Bob Kimball, lasted just over a year. Kimball, formerly the company's president, took the job on an interim basis in January 2010 after Glaser stepped down. Kimball became CEO that July and resigned in March 2011.
Other executives have jumped ship recently. Chief Financial Officer Michael Eggers and Chief Legal Officer Tracy Daw resigned in April, and Chief Strategy Officer Hank Skorny left last September.
Real Networks is providing Nielsen with a severance package. He'll get $37,500 per month for the next 18 months plus $168,299, a pro rated portion of his 2012 bonus plan. Altogether, he's receiving $843,299 in cash.
The company is also accelerating the vesting of Nielsen's stock options by a year, and giving him an extra six months to exercise them.
He received options on 880,000 shares when he was hired.
In the quarter ended March 31, the company lost $17 million on sales of $67 million. During the same period last year, it lost $12 million on sales of $87.3 million.
Real Networks pioneered online streaming digital media. After a series of reorganizations in recent years, its primary focus is now software and services sold to big customers like phone companies.
It also has a relatively large games business and continues to produce consumer products such as RealPlayer.
Brier Dudley: 206-515-5687 or email@example.com