IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 25, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- PRO-DEX, INC. (PDEX) announced today that its Board of Directors voted unanimously to combine the roles of Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer and appointed Harold A. Hurwitz to the position of Chief Executive Officer effective immediately. Mr. Hurwitz will retain his position as the Company's Chief Financial Officer. He succeeds Michael J. Berthelot, who had served as the Company's Chief Executive Officer since April 2012.
Mr. Hurwitz, 61, has served as the Company's Chief Financial Officer since 2010. From 2008 to 2010, Mr. Hurwitz was Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Interventional Spine Inc., a medical device company focused on percutaneous systems for treatment of back pain. Prior to that, he was a Principal Consultant with McDermott & Bull, a retained executive search firm, where he specialized in serving the life science industry. From 1997 through 2004, Mr. Hurwitz was Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Micro Therapeutics, Inc., a developer and manufacturer of interventional neurovascular medical devices, now part of Covidien plc. Mr. Hurwitz began his career with Coopers & Lybrand, L.L.P., now part of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, where he served for 22 years, leading its life science and high technology practices in Orange County.
Nick Swenson, Chairman of the Company's Board of Directors, commented, "Pro-Dex seeks to embrace the scale-enabled qualities of great small companies, such as flexibility and the potential of any one employee to understand the character, capability, and personality of any other company employee. We believe these characteristics will help achieve an environment that leads to improved freedom of information flow, a low requirement for strictures and first-hand knowledge about individual productivity, all of which should serve to increase Pro-Dex's ability to respond to customer needs, solve problems and innovate."
"The board has confidence that Hal's thoughtful leadership style will bring out the best in Pro-Dex. Hal is a veteran of the medical device industry and his experience on the Pro-Dex senior leadership team gives him an in-depth knowledge of Pro-Dex's business. I believe that V.P. level leaders at Pro-Dex are also accomplished veterans in their respective domains. They appear eager to exercise their talents. The leadership of Pro-Dex is in very capable hands."
"The board's consolidation of the CEO and CFO roles will result in a reduced cost footprint. While in the first year this benefit will be offset by an approximate $165,000 one-time change of control payment to Mr. Berthelot (as required under Mr. Berthelot's change of control agreement that was approved by Pro-Dex's previously constituted Board of Directors), savings after the first year will be approximately $260,000 annually, which is nearly 3% of Pro-Dex's most recent publicly reported shareholders' equity at December 31, 2012. In addition, the option to purchase 200,000 shares of Pro-Dex common stock previously issued to Mr. Berthelot by the previously constituted Board of Directors will be extinguished at no cost to the Company."
Mr. Swenson continued, "We thank Mike Berthelot for his three years of service as a member of our Board of Directors and his ten months of service as Chief Executive Officer. During that short period, he acted decisively to implement thoughtful and much needed operational change and to institute foundational practices that will surely outlive his tenure. We wish him well in his future pursuits."
"I am privileged to be able to work with Pro-Dex's dedicated management team and associates," said Mr. Hurwitz. "Together with the guidance of our recently reconstituted Board, and in partnership with our customers, I look forward to building upon the company's achievements for the benefit of all of its stakeholders."
Pro-Dex, Inc., with operations in California and Oregon, specializes in the design, development and manufacture of powered rotary drive surgical and dental instruments used primarily in the orthopedic, spine, maxocranial facial and dental markets. Its OMS division designs and manufactures embedded motion control systems serving the medical, dental, semi-conductor and scientific research markets. Pro-Dex's products are found in hospitals, dental offices, medical engineering labs, scientific research facilities and high tech manufacturing operations around the world. For more information, visit the Company's website at www.pro-dex.com.
Statements herein concerning the Company's plans, growth and strategies may include 'forward-looking statements' within the context of the federal securities laws. Statements regarding the Company's future events, developments and future performance, as well as management's expectations, beliefs, plans, estimates or projections relating to the future, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of these laws. The Company's actual results may differ materially from those suggested as a result of various factors. Interested parties should refer to the disclosure concerning the operational and business concerns of the Company set forth in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.