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Solid-state drives maker OCZ Technology Group on Wednesday said its board of directors had appointed Ralph Schmitt as the company's president and chief executive officer effective immediately. Ralph Schmitt, who started his career as storage system designer, has been a member of the company's board of directors since April 2011 and until yesterday was the head of PLX Technologies.

"I am pleased to announce that OCZ's board has appointed Ralph Schmitt as the company's president and chief executive officer. Ralph's knowledge of OCZ's business, customers, and target markets along with his extensive management experience and technical expertise make him the ideal person to lead OCZ through the next phase of its development," said Adam Epstein, OCZ's lead independent director.  

Mr. Schmitt joins OCZ from PLX Technologies, a provider of semiconductor-based connectivity solutions primarily targeting the enterprise and consumer markets, where he served as president and CEO from 2008 until yesterday. Ralph Schmitt is expected to continue quick development of OCZ, but to also focus on financial discipline and profitability.

"I am excited and honored to have been asked to lead OCZ, and look forward to working with the company's talented, dedicated employees to deliver leading solid state solutions. Innovation, quality and profitability will be the principles that drive the company going forward. We will overcome some near term tactical challenges, and we will focus relentlessly on increased value to both our investors and customers. We have an amazing opportunity in front of us and we will take full advantage of our position, products and people to be successful," said Mr. Schmitt.

Mr. Schmitt is the on the board of the Global Semiconductor Alliance (GSA), and remains on the board of PLX. Prior to his leadership tenure at PLX, he acted as CEO of Legend Silicon, a privately funded Chinese terrestrial digital TV semiconductor company in 2008. From 2005 through 2007, Mr. Schmitt was CEO of Sipex, an analog semiconductor company that merged with Exar in 2007, where he was appointed CEO.

From 1999 to 2005, Mr. Schmitt was executive vice president of sales, marketing, and business development for Cypress Semiconductor where he led sales growth to over $1 billion, while also overseeing the acquisition and integration of numerous companies. He has served on private and public boards ranging from semiconductor, to solar and systems companies. Mr. Schmitt holds a B.S.E.E. from Rutgers University.

Tags: OCZ, PLX, SSD, NAND, Flash, Business

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