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« on: July 28, 2005, 05:07:15 PM »


Cyberonics director resigns in CEO policy protest

Thu Jul 28, 2005 06:57 PM ET
NEW YORK, July 28 (Reuters) - A director for Cyberonics Inc. (CYBX.O: Quote, Profile, Research) resigned from the board in protest over the company's CEO compensation and succession policies, the company revealed in a filing with U.S. regulators on Thursday.
Ronald Matricaria, who had been Chairman of the Cyberonics board's Compensation Committee and a member of its Strategic Advisory Committee, informed the company of his decision through an e-mail on July 24, the filing said.

Matricaria said he was resigning as a director of the company, effective on Saturday, July 23.

In his e-mail, Matricaria said he "cannot support the direction of the governance practices of the Cyberonics board, in particular its practices regarding CEO compensation and succession."

In response to Matricaria's concerns, the remaining independent board members said, that while it "believes that the company's corporate governance and CEO compensation and succession policies and practices are satisfactory, it has requested the company's Secretary to conduct a thorough review of its corporate governance procedures to determine if any improvements or changes are necessary."

Houston-based Cyberonics sells a stopwatch-sized device used to treat epilepsy. The implanted neurostimulator called the Vagus Nerve Stimulator (VNS) earlier this month was approved to also treat chronic depression after numerous regulatory setbacks.

The company this week dramatically cut its forecast, saying it expected a much larger third-quarter and full-year loss than Wall Street was anticipating due to higher research and marketing costs.

Cyberonics' volatile Chief Executive, Robert "Skip" Cummins, came under fire for his handling of the regulatory process and his aggressive tone toward the U.S. Food and Drug Administration last August, when the agency rejected the VNS for depression.

At the time, he called the action of the agency that held the fate of his product in its hands, "arbitrary," and "inexplicable" and said the FDA was putting the lives of more than 4 million depressed people at risk of suicide.[/size]


"If you are going through hell, keep going." (Sir Winston Churchill, 1874-1965)
VNS implanted Sept 02, turned off Dec 04, Generator ex-planted Nov 07
Electrodes are in me for LIFE!
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