Palm taps AT&T exec

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NEW YORK (CNNfn) – Palm Inc. has hired David Nigel, AT&T Corp.’s chief technology officer, to become president and CEO of its software unit, according to a published report Monday.

The Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the situation, said the appointment of Nigel, who already is a member of Palm’s board, is expected to be announced Monday and is the latest in a series of maneuvers by the hand-held computer maker to boost its software platform division.

Nigel will replace Alan Kessler, former head of Palm’s software group, who resigned in mid-August, the report said.

A Palm spokeswoman declined to comment, saying “Our policy is not to comment on rumors,” while AT&T had no comment on the matter, the WSJ said.

Santa Clara, Calif.-based Palm, which has experienced a sales slowdown this year, said in late July it would form a separate subsidiary for its software division. Nigel is expected to report to the board of Palm’s software subsidiary, which is yet to be formed, the Journal said.

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