In an exclusive IRC chat this afternoon, Duval said, "I'm very sad since my new role was pretty exciting. Additionally, seven years ago I created my job and some jobs for many other people, and eventually someone, the current boss, tells me, 'Now you leave.' Ouch!"
For sure there's more to it than that, but Mandriva Linux is one of those desktop flavors that have catered particularly to ease of use and new users in an attempt to increase Linux on the desktop. The company does have commercial goals and plans to move into the crowded Enterprise market, and such drastic changes always impact a company greatly. Let's hope they can continue to release Mandriva as a quality product.