Harmonic CFO Hal Covert leaves

  • Signs for push-out forces
  • After about a year on the job
  • Praise and thanks for Covert
  • Search for a successor

(management-change.com) — San Jose, California, December 13, 2016 — Hal Covert, finance chief of Harmonic, leaves. As announced by Harmonic Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Tuesday, December 13, 2016, Harold (Hal) Covert leaves the post as Chief Financial Officer at the technology company that develops and markets video routing in a surprising move after about a year on the job, effective in the coming months.

No company wants a CFO to flame out in the first years.

Harmonic will undertake a search for a successor.

“Because of the strain that your extensive travel has placed on your family”

Covert’s move is explained as follows. Harmonic said: Covert, the Company’s Chief Financial Officer, “intends to resign from the CFO role in the coming months in order to spend more time with his family on the East Coast”.

In a letter to Covert filed with the SEC, Harmonic said:

“Dear Hal:

We have appreciated your willingness to step down from the board and assist Harmonic Inc. … for the past year, after our prior CFO’s departure, and also understand your desire to transition out of the CFO position because of the strain that your extensive travel has placed on your family.”

In the letter to Covert filed with the SEC, Harmonic further said: “As we have discussed, it is important to Harmonic that you continue to serve as our CFO until both our 2016 10-K is filed and we have a new CFO on board.”

Chaired by Patrick Gallagher

Harmonic Inc. is chaired by Patrick Gallagher.

Patrick Gallagher has been a director since October 2007 and was elected Chairman of the Board on April 18, 2013.

Patrick J. Harshman serves as CEO of Harmonic Inc. Harshman joined the Company in 1993 and was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer in May 2006.

On the job as CFO since 2015

Harold Covert joined Harmonic as Chief Financial Officer in November 2015 after serving on the company’s board of directors, heading up the audit committee, since 2007.

From 2011 to 2014, Covert served as an independent business consultant and Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Lumos Networks Corporation.

Previously, Covert served as President and Chief Financial Officer at Silicon Image, Inc., Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Openwave Systems Inc., and Chief Financial Officer at Fortinet Inc.

Covert has also served on various boards, including JDS Uniphase Corporation, Solta Medical, Inc. and Silicon Image.

Covert is a Certified Public Accountant and earned a B.S. in Business Administration from Lake Erie College and an M.B.A. from Cleveland State University.

Covert will continue to serve as CFO until after the filing of the Company’s 2016 annual report with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the appointment of a successor CFO.

His resignation will be effective on the later of the date that Harmonic’s annual report on Form 10-K for 2016 is filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission or the date that the Company hires a new Chief Financial Officer.


As a general rule, when a top manager announces to step down with no successor in place, it is a signal that the move was unplanned and too early.

Signs for push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Hal Covert’s move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by management-change.com suggests that push-out forces may have contributed to the management change.

Read the full story in the management-change.com report 47.2016 ($).