Spring brought us news of several patent monetization firms cleaning house, sometimes entirely, which is the case of Altitude Capital and the deal it struck between wholly owned Digitude and RPX. Rumors that Rembrandt IP will soon be shutting its doors continue to swirl, while its former Managing Director Phil Hartstein heads for IP Navigation to become VP and Portfolio Manager.
Over at Intellectual Ventures, Joe Chernesky is reportedly stepping down to join Kudelski Group. IAM Magazine reports that IV’s former head of licensing will be put in charge of licensing Kudelski’s 4000 patent portfolio. Spring cleaning may be a bit of a tradition at IV. Recall last April, the firm jettisoned Cassius Elston and bid farewell to Vincent Pluvinage. Joining Chernesky in Intellectual Venture’s Alumni Class of 2012 are Mario Obeidat and Michael Pierantozzi. Obeidat becomes head of licensing for Pendrell Corporation (NASDAQ: PCO), while IAM reports that Pierantozzi resume full-time consulting.
Finally, RPX announced the departure of co-founder Eran Zur. Zur immediately resigned from the board, replaced by Steven L. Fingerhood, and will continue to serve as President until August 1, 2012. About Zur’s departure, an RPX press release explained, “Over the past four years, Mr. Zur has been active in RPX’s dramatic expansion, and he will continue to contribute as President of the Company until his relocation to Israel in August.”
Although no immediate announcements have indicated what, if anything, Zur will be doing once he gets to Israel, he isn’t likely to go broke any time soon. According to RPX’s recently filed proxy statement, Zur was compensated a total of $2.5 MM for his service to RPX in 2011, although the vast majority ($2+ MM) came in the form of stock options, with a little under $500,000 being paid in salary and bonuses.