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Microsoft Reportedly Wants New CEO by Year's End

Current Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced plans to retire at the end of August. At the time, Ballmer said he would stay on until a new CEO was found and would help in the search for his replacement. Ballmer recently had his last company meeting at Microsoft, suggesting his exit was imminent. Now, rumor has it that Microsoft's board hopes to find a replacement before the year is over.

Bloomberg cites people with knowledge of the discussions who say Microsoft is currently narrowing down its list of potential CEOs and is hoping to reach a decision, appointing a new chief executive before 2013 draws to a close. Bloomberg's sources say some candidates have said they're not interested (eBay CEO John Donahoe is one example), and Microsoft is working on its choices amid preliminary interviews. Redmond has reportedly already spoken to Ford's Alan Mulally, Nokia's Stephen Elop, Pivotal CEO and former Microsoft exec Paul Maritz, and Microsoft business chief Tony Bates.

It's been almost 50 days since Ballmer announced his plans to retire within the year. In that time we've seen all sorts of names bandied about as potential candidates, chief among them Nokia's Stephen Elop (who used to work at Microsoft), and Ford CEO Alan Mulally. Mulally was, at the end of September, described as the frontrunner for the position. Though Ford has refused to entertain the rumors (the company called it 'speculation'), Mulally has cryptically said his plan to stay at Ford until the end of 2014 remains unchanged. Is Microsoft willing to wait for the right candidate, or is time of the essence in this scenario? Or, will Mulally change his plans in exchange for the right deal at Redmond?

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  • ubercake
    I'll do it!
    Reply
  • gotskillz
    I really hope they find somebody young. These old CEO's running these IT companies are getting behind the times.

    They need somebody young that will come in and actually be CEO and help be the creative engine for the future. This is what Bill Gates and Steve Jobs were. They need a leader that is equally interested in the profits of the company and the product they are delivering. That is what Steve and Bill were.

    They didn't care about cutting corners and releasing crappy systems for the sake of profit.
    Reply
  • ioconnor
    Need to remove Bill Gates as Chairman before picking a new CEO or this time they won't lose 600 billion but the whole company.
    Reply
  • snowzsan
    @ ioconnor

    Right, because it has anything to do with Bill being Chairman. How about the string of terrible products they pushed on the market (Office 365, anyone?) like the popularly hated but completely misunderstood Windows 8?

    Microsoft, WITHOUT Bill's ideals, went ahead and switched up their market plan because they were falling behind in terms of innovation. Of course their avid crowd was pissed, but it's a necessary change. The sooner people realize that a company is going to save itself before it better serves it's customers, the better.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    If Microsoft wants to go somewhere, they need to start over with someone who does not have 40 years of preconceived ideas and experience in the way everybody else does things... otherwise, they will end up doing most of the exact same boring things they are already doing in almost exactly same boring ways.

    They need a "(mostly) legacy-free" outsider to come through and do a clean sweep of constructive criticism because Microsoft (and most long-time players) are stuck in patterns.
    Reply
  • ubercake
    11698551 said:
    Need to remove Bill Gates as Chairman before picking a new CEO or this time they won't lose 600 billion but the whole company.
    This company is earning tens of BILLIONS (over 50 this year) in profit even during this transitional phase. Where do you get your facts?
    Reply
  • milktea
    by year's end?

    Why don't MS just find someone to be interim CEO from within the company?

    If they try to rush it, they might end up over paying someone who'd most likely screw up the company.
    Reply
  • gotskillz
    Quote:
    Need to remove Bill Gates as Chairman before picking a new CEO or this time they won't lose 600 billion but the whole company.

    This company is earning tens of BILLIONS (over 50 this year) in profit even during this transitional phase. Where do you get your facts?

    Haha I was wondering the same thing
    Reply
  • iam2thecrowe
    Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson seem right for the job.
    Reply
  • gaaah
    MS rejuvination = new OS with tightly integrated voice recognition and eyeball tracking.
    Reply