Texas Instruments Chief Executive Resigns; Conduct Violations Are Cited

The newly appointed chief executive of Texas Instruments stepped down Tuesday over what the company said were “violations of the company’s code of conduct.”

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Ben Casselman
, New York Times

The newly appointed chief executive of Texas Instruments stepped down Tuesday over what the company said were “violations of the company’s code of conduct.”

The executive, Brian Crutcher, also resigned from the company’s board. He had taken the helm at the Dallas-based chipmaker in June after 22 years at the company, most recently as chief operating officer.

A Texas Instruments spokeswoman declined to provide details of the behavior that led to Crutcher’s resignation. In a news release late Tuesday, the company said the violations were “related to personal behavior that is not consistent with our ethics and core values, but not related to company strategy, operations or financial reporting.”

Crutcher will be replaced by his predecessor, Rich Templeton, who was chief executive for 14 years and stayed on as the company’s chairman after announcing his retirement in January. The company said that Templeton, 59, would return as president and chief executive indefinitely and that the board was not searching for a replacement.

In an email to employees Tuesday, Templeton reaffirmed the company’s “unwavering commitment to conducting business ethically and behaving in a professional manner.”

“I recognize that this news is unexpected,” Templeton wrote. “When we uncover situations of concern or policy violations, they will be investigated and addressed quickly. This applies to everyone at TI, including top performers, top executives and most importantly to the CEO.”

Corporate executives’ personal behavior has come under heightened scrutiny since the #MeToo movement emerged last year. In June, Brian Krzanich stepped down as chief executive of another semiconductor giant, Intel, over what the company said was a “past consensual relationship” with a subordinate. This month, Barnes & Noble fired its chief executive, Demos Parneros, over unspecified violations of the company’s policies that it said hadn’t involved financial reporting or potential fraud.

Executives at Nike, Lululemon Athletica and other companies have also left their jobs over violations — similarly vaguely described — of company policies or standards.

Texas Instruments shares fell modestly in after-hours trading. But Cody Acree, an analyst for Loop Capital Markets in Dallas, said investors probably wouldn’t be too rattled, especially given Templeton’s return.

“Rich is such a long-tenured, well-respected and successful prior CEO,” Acree said.

Founded as an oil and gas company in the 1930s, Texas Instruments later shifted to technology, helping to pioneer the development of the microprocessor in the 1970s and becoming known for its ubiquitous calculators. Under Templeton, the company turned its focus toward making analog processors used in cars, industrial machinery and other products.

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