By Sudarshana Banerjee

Michael J. Holston, executive vice president and general counsel, will leave the company to pursue other opportunities, says HP. While there is probably no really good time for the general counsel of a company to be leaving for other pastures, this move comes at a especially inopportune timing – HP is currently in the middle of locking horns with Oracle.

A formal search is underway for Mr. Holston’s replacement. Candidates from both inside and outside the company will be considered, says HP.

David W. Healy, partner and co-chair, Mergers & Acquisition Group, Fenwick & West, will act as HP’s general counsel on an interim basis. Healy represented HP on its recent acquisition of Vertica and its agreement to sell its Video Collaboration business unit to Polycom. Healy will oversee all legal activities during the interim period.

Prior to his joining HP, Holston supported the company as external counsel for more than ten years on a variety of litigation and regulatory matters.

“Mike has been an exceptional leader at HP and a great contributor to the company’s mission,” said Meg Whitman, HP president and chief executive officer. “The entire company wishes him well in his future endeavors.”