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Juniper Loses More Execs

CFO Robert Dykes and the head of Juniper's enterprise business Robert Sturgeon have announced they're leaving the company

Two more executives are quitting Juniper Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: JNPR): CFO Robert Dykes and Robert Sturgeon, head of Juniper's enterprise efforts.

Dykes will leave at the end of April and Sturgeon at the end of March, the company announced today in an Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing. Both men filed their resignations yesterday.

On a conference call with analysts today, CEO Scott Kriens said both resignations were "mutual decisions... not at all related to the financial model or the financial performance of the company."

Going along with that, the SEC filing states: "Neither resignation was the result of any disagreement with the Company on any matters relating to the Company's operations, policies or practices."

As executive vice president of the Service Layer Technology Group, Sturgeon, a former Lucent VP who joined Juniper in 2001, was in charge of the enterprise business Juniper got with the $4 billion acquisition of NetScreen Technologies. (See Juniper Buys NetScreen.)

Kriens was asked on the call whether Sturgeon's resignation implies anything about Juniper's enterprise business, but he replied that the company doesn't give out any mid-quarter financial guidance.

As for Dykes, he's credited with helping contract manufacturer Flextronics Corp. (Nasdaq: FLEX) during its growth phase. One of only three direct reports to Kriens, Dykes joined in late 2004, presumably to help Juniper with its own growth after acquiring NetScreen. (See Juniper Appoints New CFO.)

Kriens wouldn't comment on whether Juniper has any heirs apparent in-house but said internal candidates will be getting consideration as a matter of policy.

Juniper lost three executives about a year ago, including Jim Dolce, former CEO of acquired firm Unisphere Networks, and Carol Mills, who ran Juniper's router group. Today's changes come on the heels of Juniper re-creating the chief operating officer's position, filled by former Macromedia Inc. CEO Stephen Elop. (See Dolce & Others out at Juniper and Juniper Revives COO's Office.)

Juniper stock was down 24 cents (1.4%) at $17.50 in early after-hours trading today.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading