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IBM sues over diversity head-hunt

by on13 February 2018

Resigned to compete claim

Biggish Blue has sued its former executive Lindsay-Rae McIntyre, who was named Microsoft new chief diversity officer over the weekend, alleging violation of a one-year non-competitive agreement.

McIntyre, who “abruptly resigned to compete against IBM”, was in possession of highly confidential and sensitive information about IBM’s diversity strategies, hiring targets, technologies and innovations, IBM said in the lawsuit filed in a New York federal court.

Microsoft was not immediately available for comment outside regular business hours. McIntyre was not reachable for comment.

Bloomberg said Judge Vincent Briccetti temporarily barred McIntyre from moving to Microsoft. IBM complained that McIntyre using and disclosing, whether intentionally or not, its confidential and sensitive information would place the company at a competitive disadvantage.

McIntyre was human resources VP and chief diversity office at IBM. IBM said it sought to enforce McIntyre’s non-competition agreement for a year and recover from her the equity compensation she has forfeited by “violating her contractual duties” to IBM.

McIntyre said that IBM’s diversity-related trade secrets are not valuable to Microsoft and McIntyre will not be able to use them in her new role.

Last modified on 13 February 2018
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