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October 28, 1991


By CBR Staff Writer

Only the ejection of Bill Gates from the chair of Microsoft Corp or a decision by the board of Digital Equipment Corp that it was time Ken Olsen retired could have caused such a sensation as the removal of Rod Canion from the chief executives post at the company he co-founded, Compaq Computer Corp. Canion was fired Thursday night during a marathon 14-hour-long board meeting, the company said. Chairman Ben Rosen explained that the issue came down to a choice of Canion or Eckhard Pfeiffer, who has succeeded him, to run the company, that the idea of their teaming in an office of the president was discussed and rejected, and that it was decided that Canion would have to lose out – and to quit – when he declined a continuing seat on the board. Pfeiffer was preferred over Canion because he has been pushing for changes – such as much lower prices and the introduction of new mass-market products like notebook computers at a faster rate. The news sent Compaq’s stock tumbling $2.75 to $30.25 on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday.

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