Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Hilton executive in corporate 'espionage' case exits

Hilton Hotels Corporation, the American hotel behemoth, has replaced Ross Klein as global head of luxury and lifestyle brands after a lawsuit brought by Starwood Hotels, his former employer, accused him of looting confidential information.

Sources close to the company confirmed today that Mr Klein, who had been placed on paid administrative leave in April after the launch of the legal action, has now left Hilton. He is being replaced by John Vanderslice, former chief executive of Miraval Spa in Tucson, Arizona.

The news that Mr Klein has left will reignite speculation that Hilton, which is also being sued, is close to agreeing a settlement with its rival aimed at drawing a line under what the writ called "the clearest imaginable case of corporate espionage, theft of trade secrets, unfair competition and computer fraud".


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