He is also a major philanthropist and the founder of numerous non-profit organizations, including the Arctic Research Foundation (which found one of the lost Franklin ships in 2016), the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, the Balsillie School of International Affairs and the Centre for International Governance Innovation.
An avid hockey fan, Balsillie tried on three separate occasions to purchase an NHL team and move it to Hamilton, Ontario. His father, Raymond, worked as an electronics technician for Ontario Hydro and his mother, Laurel, raised Jim and his brother and sister.
Also, Sycamore Networks has been named in a lawsuit brought by a former employee, in which the former employee alleges that his employment contract was terminated because he complained about the company’s stock option practices.
In addition, the plaintiffs allege that the M-Systems officers and directors breached their fiduciary duty to M-Systems shareholders by backdating stock options and sought to further their own interests by approving the merger. Special thanks to Adam Savett of the Lies, Damned Lies blog for bringing this lawsuit to the attention of .
James Balsillie, RIM's co-chief executive officer, admitted yesterday his company backdated stock options granted to employees. While RIM's special committee described a number of instances of improper options-granting practices, it said it found no "intentional misconduct" on the part of any director or employee. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Ontario Securities Commission are reviewing RIM. "It's just a road map." Dimitri Lascaris, a lawyer acting for the Ironworkers Ontario Pension Fund, which owns 13,200 RIM shares, filed a lawsuit against the company in January. RIM announced a series of board and executive changes yesterday. Balsillie will remain co-CEO but will give up the title of chairman to an as-yet unnamed independent director, while chief financial officer Dennis Kavelman will leave his position to become chief operating officer.
From December 1996 to July 2006, Jim Balsillie, Dennis Kavelman (then CFO), Mike Lazaridis and certain other RIM officers and directors engaged in improper stock option granting practices, including backdating and repricing of executive, director and employee stock option awards. In the February 2009 settlement of the Ontario Securities Commission’s enforcement action, Balsillie, Lazaridis and Kavelman agreed that they engaged in option backdating and repricing and that the total “in-the-money” undisclosed benefit from the incorrect option dating practices was approximately million.
Following an internal investigation, in May 2007, RIM restated its historical financial statements with a cumulative, non-cash, stock-based compensation expense of U. They confirmed that they returned the improper financial benefits they received from the incorrectly priced options and undertook to contribute, in aggregate, .1 million to RIM and to pay administrative penalties and OSC costs totalling million.
Both Balsillie and Lazaridis are each expected to pay back about .25 million.
Also, Dennis Kavelman is being demoted from his position as Chief Financial Officer to become the RIM’s Chief Operating Officer – Administration and Operations.