Triangle Capital co-founder Brent Burgess resigns

Brent Burgess, the chief investment officer of Raleigh investment firm Triangle Capital and one of its founders, has resigned.

“There is a great team (at Triangle Capital) and I think it is time for me to move on,” Burgess said. “After 14 years, I’m looking at doing something new and fresh.”

Burgess said he didn’t have any definite plans but expects to remain in the area.

“I’ve been involved in advising smaller companies for quite some time,” he said. “So I may be looking at doing more of that for awhile.”

Asked if he was forced to resign, Burgess declined to comment. A spokesman for Triangle Capital declined to comment on why Burgess resigned.

Burgess’ resignation took effect Friday and was announced after the markets closed Tuesday. Burgess also resigned from the company’s board of directors.

CEO Ashton Poole issued a statement praising Burgess: “As one of the founders of Triangle and its predecessor company, he helped build Triangle into a leading business development company focused on the lower middle market. We wish him every success in his future endeavors.”

An exit agreement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission in conjunction with the resignation announcement specified that Burgess “represents that his resignation is not due to any dispute or disagreement with Triangle.”

Under the exit agreement, Burgess will receive a $250,000 cash payment and accelerated vesting of 93,284 shares of restricted stock that he received as part of his compensation package over the past several years. Triangle also will pay the cost of medical and dental insurance under COBRA for him and his dependents through Dec. 31, 2017.

In addition, Triangle Capital will transfer to Burgess ownership of the $1 million term life insurance “key man policy” that covers him, and will pay the annual premium due for the $2 million term life insurance policy that Burgess received as an employee benefit.

Triangle also agreed to pay up to $5,000 to the attorney who advised Burgess on the terms of the exit agreement.

Triangle Capital also agreed to provide Burgess with a draft of the press release announcing his resignation, solicit his comments and “work in good faith … on mutually acceptable language.” Still, Triangle had final say on the wording.

For his part, Burgess agreed not to disparage Triangle Capital and not to compete with the company through the end of 2017.

Burgess is the second Triangle Capital co-founder to depart the company this year. CEO Garland S. Tucker III retired in February.

According to the company’s latest proxy statement, Burgess’ compensation package in 2015 totaled nearly $2.1 million, including a $367,500 salary and a $570,000 bonus.

Triangle Capital makes loans to midsized, privately owned businesses. It also takes a minority ownership stake in its portfolio companies. As of June 30, its investment portfolio was valued at $930.8 million.

“We’ve had a tremendous run at Triangle,” Burgess said. “I think we’ve been successful probably beyond our expectations when we started it.”

He added that he is, and intends to continue to be, “a significant shareholder” in the company.

David Ranii: 919-829-4877, @dranii