Richard Schulze, the founder and chairman of Best Buy, is the latest to be removed from the company that also cost CEO Brian Dunn his job earlier this year. It was announced on Monday by the company that Hatim Tyabji will become the chairman of the board beginning on June 21. Tyabji is serving as the chairman of the company’s audit committee right now.
Dunn left Best Buy on April 10 after a report concluded that he violated company policy. The report said Dunn did so by “by engaging in an extremely close personal relationship with a female employee that negatively impacted the work environment.”
Dunn left Best Buy with a severance package worth close to $6,639,311. Dunn was with the company for 28 years and became CEO in 2009. He resigned in April when the company’s board of directors began an investigation into his behavior. According to Best Buy, Schulze, “acted inappropriately when he failed to bring the matter to the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors in December 2011, when the allegations were first raised with him.”
The results of the investigation into Dunn were revealed on Saturday by Best Buy regarding his relationship with a 29-year-old female employee. The report stated that Dunn had an inappropriate relationship with the female that disrupted the workplace. Multiple employees saw the two meet privately in his office and in conference rooms on multiple occasions. The report also states the following:
“During one four-day and one five-day trip abroad during 2011, the CEO contacted the female employee by cell phone at least 224 times, including 33 phone calls, 149 text messages, and 42 picture or video messages. In one instance, several photographs were discovered on the CEO’s personal cell phone that contained messages expressing affection, one of which included the female employee’s initials.”
The report also found that Dunn loaned the employee $600 of his personal money as well as giving her tickets to seven sporting events and concerts. The report did not mention the misuse of company funds or aircraft. The report did find that the relationship “negatively impacted the work environment” and “demonstrated extremely poor judgment and a lack of professionalism.”
Both the female employee and Dunn denied that their relationship was improper or romantic but the report claimed otherwise. The report mentions that the woman discussed her relationship with her co-workers multiple times. The report also says that Schulze became aware of the relationship in December of 2011 but failed to disclose the problem to the company’s audit committee. The issues did not come to light with the board of directors until March of 2012.