Former Intel General Counsel Now Apple General Counsel
Longtime Intel general counsel Bruce Sewell, who left the company without explanation yesterday, evidently had good reason for doing so: He has taken a new job at Apple. That would certainly explain the “surprise” Intel expressed over his departure. And also why the company was so quick to remove his corporate bio from its Web site.
Sewell joined Intel (INTC) in 1995 as a senior attorney and was named general counsel in 2004. In that capacity, he managed Intel’s antitrust battles in Japan, Korea, the United States and now, the European Union as well. At Apple (AAPL), he succeeds Daniel Cooperman, who will retire at month’s end.
“We are thrilled to have Bruce join our executive team, and wish Dan a very happy retirement,” Apple CEO Steve Jobs said in a statement. “With Bruce’s extensive experience in litigation, securities and intellectual property, we expect this to be a seamless transition.”
It would seem, then, that Sewell’s decision to leave Intel for Apple is more train-hopping than anything else. And while it certainly comes at a lousy time for Intel, it’s not likely indicative of some upset within the company’s legal department.
As Insight 64 analyst Nathan Brookwood told me this morning, “Some personnel changes result from the circumstances of the individuals involved, rather than high level machinations within the organizations to which they belong. Cooperman’s retirement created the opening at Apple, a position Sewell is well qualified to fill. My bottom line: Bruce’s move has more to do with Apple’s need for a top notch lawyer than with Intel’s current legal situation.”
The official announcement, below.
Bruce Sewell to Join Apple as General Counsel & SVP
Daniel Cooperman to Retire
CUPERTINO, Calif., Sept. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Apple today announced that Bruce Sewell, formerly senior vice president and general counsel of Intel Corporation (INTC), will join Apple as the company’s General Counsel and senior vice president, Legal and Government Affairs, reporting to Apple CEO Steve Jobs. Daniel Cooperman, who has served in these roles at Apple for the past two years, will be retiring at the end of September.
“We are thrilled to have Bruce join our executive team, and wish Dan a very happy retirement,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “With Bruce’s extensive experience in litigation, securities and intellectual property, we expect this to be a seamless transition.”
At Intel, Sewell has been responsible for leading all of Intel’s legal, corporate affairs and corporate social responsibility programs, managing attorneys and policy professionals located in over 30 countries around the world. He joined Intel in 1995 as a senior attorney assigned to counsel various business groups in areas such as antitrust compliance, licensing and intellectual property. In 2001, Sewell was promoted to vice president and deputy general counsel, managing Intel’s litigation portfolio, and handled corporate transactions including M&A activities.
Prior to joining Intel, he was a partner in the litigation firm of Brown and Bain PC. Sewell was admitted to the California Bar in 1986 and to the Washington D.C. Bar in 1987. He received his J.D. from George Washington University in 1986, and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Lancaster, in the United Kingdom, in 1979.