Another Sonsini Company Launches Options Probe

Larry Sonsini just can’t keep his name away from the stock options backdating morass. Most recently, software maker Novell Inc. — where Sonsini was a board member from 1988 to 2002, and did a stint on the board’s corporate governance committee — announced that it had hired outside lawyers to investigate past options grant practices. This comes after two other companies where Sonsini was a board member, Brocade and Pixar, have had very public backdating messes — and after The Recorder reported last month that Lattice Semiconductor, LSI Logic and Echelon Corp. all had questionable options grants during the time that Sonsini sat on their boards.

It’s not clear what spurred Novell’s review, since the company has not reported an SEC investigation or any other government interest. But the image issues for Sonsini that started in February — when Brocade’s former CEO blamed Sonsini for a lack of options oversight — don’t seem to be going away any time soon.

Justin Scheck 

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