Dyson sues former CEO Max Conze

The company is claiming that it dismissed Conze in October for revealing confidential information, and has now filed a lawsuit against him.

Sir James Dyson, © Heathcliff O’Malley

Update 3 January 2017: Dyson and former CEO Max Conze have now dropped their legal claims against each other, following a settlement by the company. A spokesperson for Dyson says: “All claims have been withdrawn and settled” but has declined to comment further.

Electronics company Dyson has made legal claims against its former CEO Max Conze for allegedly leaking company secrets.

Conze originally stepped down from his position as CEO earlier this year in October. He was appointed to the role in 2011 after running Dyson’s US office, according to the BBC.

Design Week has now learned that Conze was dismissed by Dyson’s board of directors after he allegedly leaked confidential product information, according to Dyson.

The company claims that Conze used “resources and information to evaluate an investment opportunity for his own benefit and/or for the benefit of a venture capital firm”, therefore breaching his fiduciary duties. It also alleges that Conze failed to “follow lawful and reasonable instructions regarding his conduct and focus of attention”.

“Breach of fiduciary duties”

A spokesperson for Dyson says: “The Dyson board has decided to bring a claim against Max Conze at the High Court of Justice in London in relation to his actions while CEO, including the disclosure of confidential information, and a breach of his fiduciary duties”.

Speaking to the BBC, Conze denied Dyson’s allegations, saying: “I did nothing of the sort. During my six years as CEO of Dyson, the sales and profits will have tripled with the company growing from 2,500 to 10,000 staff.”

“This ridiculous allegation is merely trying to distract attention from the claims that Dyson know I am about to issue,” he adds.

Dyson lodged the action in the High Court in London on Wednesday (15 November).

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