Latest News

Comtech Fires CEO Ken Peterman 

By Rachel Jewett | March 13, 2024

      Comtech’s office in Chandler, Arizona. Photo: Comtech

      Global technology company Comtech fired its President and CEO Ken Peterman for “conduct unrelated to business strategy, financial results or previously filed financial statements,” the company announced in a March 13 news release.

      Peterman will no longer serve on the company’s board. The board elected current board member Mark Quinlan to board chair. “The board is committed to upholding the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct,” Quinlan said in the announcement.

      John Ratigan, Comtech’s chief corporate development officer, will serve as interim CEO, effective immediately. Ratigan is a former iDirect Government executive who joined the company in December 2023. He has an extensive background in satellite communications and spent 10 years at EF Data Corp. before it was acquired by Comtech in 2000. Comtech said it will search for a permanent successor to Peterman and plans to use an executive search firm.

      Peterman’s sudden firing comes just a year and a half after taking the role in August 2022. He was scheduled to speak next week at the SATELLITE 2024 conference and give interviews. Peterman succeeded Michael Porcelain, who held the role for less than seven months. Prior to Porcelain, Comtech had a longtime CEO Fred Kornberg, who led the company from 1976 to 2022.  

      Over the past year, Comtech rolled out a new brand identity and the “One Comtech” strategy, under Peterman’s leadership. Peterman previously spoke with Via Satellite about how the company unified its 14 independent, siloed businesses and moved toward common tools and processes and ways to create new products working across the business lines. 

      The revitalization was paying off, with five consecutive quarters of growth. However, Comtech has a deadline to pay off a credit facility in October and the company disclosed a “going concern” that its cash flow will be enough to fund operations over the next 12 months and repay the credit facility. After that disclosure, Comtech received a $45 million investment from shareholders White Hat Capital Partners and Magnetar.

      Ratigan said he hopes to continue the “One Comtech” strategy.

      “As a leading global provider of next-generation 911 systems, secure wireless technologies and satellite communications, Comtech is at the forefront of innovative trusted connectivity solutions,” Ratigan said in the release. “I look forward to working closely with the leadership team and the board as we continue successfully executing on One Comtech, building on the company’s recent momentum.”