Symantec sacks CEO Steve Bennett

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Symantec sacks CEO Steve Bennett

Second CEO to go in two years.

Security software vendor Symantec today revealed it has fired CEO Steve Bennett after less than two years on the job.

The move marks the second time Symantec has sacked its top executive in as many years, as the company struggles to revive growth amid eroding PC sales. 

Symantec unexpectedly ousted CEO Enrique Salem in 2012 even as a strategic review was under way to turn around the company - an effort Bennett was later appointed to run.

The company's shares fell as much as 10 percent in extended trading.

Board member Michael Brown has been appointed interim president and CEO.

The company said the decision to let go of Bennett was "the result of an ongoing deliberative process and not precipitated by any event or impropriety."

"It's a jaw-dropping move, especially because Bennett was key to the company's turnaround. I view this as a major step back ...," FBR Capital Markets analyst Daniel Ives said.

"Over the last decade, there have been a lot of head scratching moves at Symantec from strategy to acquisitions and you just add this to the list," Ives said.

A special committee of the board will immediately begin a search for a permanent CEO with the help of an executive search firm, the company said.

Symantec also reaffirmed its earnings and revenue forecast for the fourth quarter.

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