Digi Int’l CEO Retires; Search Firm Tapped

After about 15 years as president, CEO, and chairman of Digi International, Joseph Dunsmore plans to retire this year.

Minnetonka-based Digi International, Inc., announced Wednesday that President, CEO, and Chairman Joseph Dunsmore will retire at the end of the year, or earlier if a successor is found.

Digi International—which makes computer networking devices such as servers and modem adapters and is among Minnesota’s 60 largest public companies—said it hired Chicago-based executive search firm Spencer Stuart to find its next president and CEO.

Dunsmore, 55, joined Digi in 1999 as president and CEO and was elected chairman of the board about a year later.

“I want to thank the board for its support and encouragement as we transformed Digi over the last 15 years,” Dunsmore said in a statement. “The company is very well-positioned for the next phase of growth in the wireless M2M [machine to machine] marketplace. I have committed to stay at Digi for the remainder of 2014, during which time I will continue to focus on our strategy and effect a smooth leadership transition.”

Ahmed Nawaz, the “independent lead director” of the board, said Dunsmore was responsible for changing the direction of the company during his tenure.

“Joe has led Digi through a period of unprecedented change in the market for our products, and initiated our transformation to a company focused on providing high-quality machine-to-machine networking solutions,” Nawaz said in a statement. “The board remains committed to our current strategy for growing Digi, and our next CEO will build on the good work that Joe has done.”

Digi’s revenue totaled $195.4 million in 2013, up 2.5 percent from the prior year.

A former Digi executive also made news throughout the last few years, but under different circumstances.

In 2010, the company announced that Chief Financial Officer Krishnan had resigned amid an investigation into violations of the company’s gifts, travel, and entertainment policy. The company said later that year that it would not be charged or fined in connection with the investigation.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) ended up suing Krishnan in September 2012, alleging that he diverted Digi funds for personal entertainment expenses. Krishnan’s actions allegedly resulted in Digi filing inaccurate financial reports with the SEC. The agency also accused him of failing to enforce Digi’s internal controls.

In order to settle the charges, Krishnan agreed to a five-year ban from serving as an officer or director of a public company and a $60,000 fine in July 2013.