CNBC today reported that Intel CEO Bob Swan will step down from his role effective Feb. 15. VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger will become the CEO of Intel.
Unlike most technology giants, Intel has not done well from the pandemic, despite massive demand for PCs. The company has not been firing on all cylinders for some years and has not been able to make the transition to 8 and 5nm chipsets already used by other OEMs.
Now the company, whose share price is down nearly 20% YoY, is under pressure by activist investor, hedge fund Third Point.
“Without immediate change at Intel, we fear that America’s access to leading-edge semiconductor supply will erode, forcing the U.S. to rely more heavily on a geopolitically unstable East Asia to power everything from PCs to data centres to critical infrastructure and more,” said Third Point CEO Daniel Loeb.
Intel is expected to officially announce the leadership later today.
Update: Intel has now confirmed the news.
- Intel today announced that its board of directors has appointed 40-year technology industry leader Pat Gelsinger as its new chief executive officer, effective Feb. 15, 2021. Gelsinger will also join the Intel board of directors upon assuming the role. He will succeed Bob Swan, who will remain CEO until Feb. 15.
- “Pat is a proven technology leader with a distinguished track record of innovation, talent development, and a deep knowledge of Intel. He will continue a values-based cultural leadership approach with a hyper focus on operational execution,” said Omar Ishrak, independent chairman of the Intel board. “After careful consideration, the board concluded that now is the right time to make this leadership change to draw on Pat’s technology and engineering expertise during this critical period of transformation at Intel. The board is confident that Pat, together with the rest of the leadership team, will ensure strong execution of Intel’s strategy to build on its product leadership and take advantage of the significant opportunities ahead as it continues to transform from a CPU to a multi-architecture XPU company.”
- “I am thrilled to rejoin and lead Intel forward at this important time for the company, our industry and our nation,” said Gelsinger. “Having begun my career at Intel and learned at the feet of Grove, Noyce and Moore, it’s my privilege and honor to return in this leadership capacity. I have tremendous regard for the company’s rich history and powerful technologies that have created the world’s digital infrastructure. I believe Intel has significant potential to continue to reshape the future of technology and look forward to working with the incredibly talented global Intel team to accelerate innovation and create value for our customers and shareholders.”
- Most recently, Gelsinger served as the CEO of VMware since 2012, where he significantly transformed the company into a recognized global leader in cloud infrastructure, enterprise mobility and cyber security, almost tripling the company’s annual revenues. Prior to joining VMware, Gelsinger was president and chief operating officer of EMC Information Infrastructure Products at EMC, overseeing engineering and operations for information storage, data computing, backup and recovery, RSA security and enterprise solutions. Before joining EMC, he spent 30 years at Intel, becoming the company’s first chief technology officer and driving the creation of key industry technologies such as USB and Wi-Fi. He was the architect of the original 80486 processor, led 14 different microprocessor programs and played key roles in the Core and Xeon families.