Intel has named Robert Swan as its permanent CEO after a seven-month search. He will serve as the company's seventh chief executive. Additionally, he has been elected to the board of directors.
Swan has served as CFO since 2016 and served as interim CEO during the search for a permanent leader. Swan had been adamant that he didn't want the job. He stepped into the interim role after former CEO Brian Krzanich resigned over a relationship with an employee, which violated company policy.
There was rampant speculation that Intel might name a CEO during its earnings call last week, but that didn't happen. At the time, Swan said on the call that the company was still searching for the right candidate, and that "I am convinced the board will close on a new CEO in the near future. In the meantime, we will not be distracted by the void."
Investors and enthusiasts will have a close eye on Swan, who will need to steer the company through supply issues and problems it has had with its 10 nanometer process, though Intel says the latter is on track for a 2019 retail launch.
Todd Underwood, Vice president of finance and director of Intel's corporate planning and reporting, will keep Swan's old seat warm as interim CFO while the company begins a search to fill that position.
“The search committee conducted a comprehensive evaluation of a wide range of internal and external candidates to identify the right leader at this critical juncture in Intel’s evolution," said Intel chairman Andy Bryant. "We considered many outstanding executives and we concluded the best choice is Bob. Important in the board’s decision was the outstanding job Bob did as interim CEO for the past seven months, as reflected in Intel’s outstanding results in 2018. Bob’s performance, his knowledge of the business, his command of our growth strategy, and the respect he has earned from our customers, our owners, and his colleagues confirmed he is the right executive to lead Intel.”
As of this writing, Intel's stock was down 2.5 percent.
A number of other candidates were widely rumored for the job, including internal candidates like Dr. Venkata "Murhty" Renduchintala, group president of the technology, systems architecture and client group as well as chief engineering officer, and external candidates like Apple chip lead Johny Srouji. We held a mock CEO draft, but no one picked right, as we all assumed that Swan was serious about not taking the top spot.