Violin Memory fires CEO, appoints board chair as interim chief

Violin Memory, which provides memory-based storage solutions, has named Howard Bain III, chairman of the company’s board of directors, as interim chief executive officer. The appointment follows the board’s decision to terminate Donald Basile as CEO. The board has started a search process for a permanent CEO. Violin Memory has been backed by venture capital firms including SAP Ventures, Highland Capital Partners, Toshiba and Juniper Networks, and went public in September.

Press Release

Violin Memory, Inc., (NYSE:VMEM), a leader in persistent memory-based storage solutions, today announced that Howard A. Bain III, Chairman of the Violin Memory Board of Directors, has been appointed interim Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Mr. Bain’s appointment follows the decision of the Board of Directors to terminate Donald Basile as Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Bain will remain Chairman of the Board.

“Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations”

The Violin Memory Board of Directors has initiated a search process and retained an executive search firm to identify a permanent CEO.

Mr. Bain, who has served as Violin Memory’s Chairman since August 2013 and as a member of the Board since October 2012, brings to the Company over 40 years of operational, financial and leadership expertise, having served as Chief Financial Officer at several public companies, including Portal Software, Inc., Vicinity Corporation, Informix Corporation and Symantec Corporation. He has significant industry experience having served in senior management positions at various technology companies in the areas of semiconductor devices and manufacturing equipment, laser-based large screen projection systems, and computer disk drives. In addition, Mr. Bain has served as a consultant on corporate governance issues since 2004, and is a Governance Fellow with the National Association of Corporate Directors.

David Walrod, Chairman of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee of the Board of Directors, said, “The Board believes this leadership change is necessary to enhance the management team’s operational focus and ability to execute the Company’s plans for profitable growth. We are, however, fortunate to have someone with Howard’s extensive operational, financial and leadership experience ready to assume the role of interim CEO at this important juncture for the Company. During his time as director of Violin Memory, Howard has gained a deep understanding of the Company’s products, customers, strategy and management team, as well as the significant growth opportunities in the enterprise memory market. We are confident that he is the right person to lead Violin Memory while we search for a permanent replacement to fill the CEO role.”

“Violin Memory is focused on maintaining the operational flexibility to manage through the emerging dynamics of our industry, with financial resources on hand to achieve our objectives. While our fundamental strategy to drive growth remains unchanged, we will pursue additional tactical initiatives to improve the overall cost efficiency of the business and improve sales leverage through our partner and indirect channels. We have a robust product roadmap in place that positions us well to take advantage of the transition to a memory-based data center and build an even stronger future for all of our stakeholders,” said Mr. Bain. “Having served as Chairman of the Board, I am well aware of the many opportunities ahead and look forward to engaging with the Company’s customers, team members and shareholders in the coming weeks. Most importantly, I am confident in our team’s ability to execute and provide our customers with the high level of support and service that they have come to expect from us.”

About Howard A. Bain III

Howard has served on our board of directors since October 2012. Since 2004, Mr. Bain has been an independent consultant in all aspects of corporate finance. Mr. Bain has served as Chief Financial Officer at several public companies including: Portal Software, Inc. from 2001 to 2004, Vicinity Corporation in 2000, Informix Corporation from 1999 to 2000, and Symantec Corporation from 1991 to 1999. Prior to that, he served as a Senior Audit Supervisor at Arthur Andersen LLP, where he was a certified public accountant.

He is also a Governance Fellow with the National Association of Corporate Directors. Mr. Bain has served on the board of directors of Nanometrics, Inc. since April 2008, Learning Tree International, Inc. since 2001, as well as Nok Nok Labs, Inc. a private venture capital financed company. Mr. Bain holds a B.S. in Business Administration from California Polytechnic University. Mr. Bain’s significant Board, operational, financial expertise, including his experience as Chief Financial Officer at several public companies, as well as his experience in various technology companies in the areas of semiconductor devices and manufacturing equipment, laser-based large screen projection systems, and computer disk drives is directly relevant to Violin’s business and his responsibilities to the Board.

About Violin Memory

Violin Memory (NYSE: VMEM) enables businesses to access real-time information by delivering memory-based storage solutions that close the compute storage gap. Named by Gartner Inc. as the market share leader in flash-based storage systems, Violin Memory brings storage performance in-line with demanding, high-speed applications, servers and networks at disk economics. Violin Memory solutions are optimized from the ground up to leverage the inherent capabilities of flash memory, enabling performance of memory at compelling economics for business-critical applications, virtualized environments and big data in enterprise data centers. Founded in 2005, Violin Memory is headquartered in Santa Clara, California. For more information, visit www.vmem.com.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding the pursuit of additional tactical initiatives to improve the overall cost efficiency of the business and improve sales leverage through Violin Memory’s partner and indirect channels as well as Violin Memory’s position to take advantage of the transition to a memory-based data center and build an even stronger future for all of its stakeholders. There are a significant number of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from statements made in this press release, including: Violin Memory’s history of large purchases by a limited number of customers; its limited operating history, particularly as a new public company; risks associated with a transition in executive leadership; its relationship with Toshiba as its sole supplier of flash-based memory; as well as general market, political, economic and business conditions. Additional risks and uncertainties that could affect Violin Memory’s financial results are included under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” in the company’s quarterly report on Form 10-Q, which was filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, and is available on the Company’s investor relations website at investor.violin-memory.com and on the SEC’s website at www.sec.gov. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to the Company as of the date hereof, and Violin Memory does not assume any obligation to update the forward-looking statements provided to reflect events that occur or circumstances that exist after the date on which they were made.

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