More Questions and Challenges for Intel’s Next CEO

Intel Corporation announced during the company’s annual stockholders’ meeting that come May 2013, CEO Paul Otellini will retire from being an officer and director of the company.

“Paul Otellini has been a very strong leader, only the fifth CEO in the company’s great 45-year history, and one who has managed the company through challenging times and market transitions,” said Andy Bryant, chairman of the board. “The board is grateful for his innumerable contributions to the company and his distinguished tenure as CEO over the last eight years.”

Otellini’s history

Otellini’s retirement will mark the end of his 45 years with the company.  He joined Intel in 1974 after he received an MBA from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.  He served as senior vice president and general manager of sales and marketing from 1994-1996, executive vice president of sales and marketing from 1996-1998, and executive vice president and general manager of the Intel Architecture Group, responsible for the company’s microprocessor and chipset businesses and strategies for desktop, mobile and enterprise computing from 1998 to 2002.

In May 2005, he replaced Craig Barrett, making him the fifth CEO of the company.  During his stint as CEO of Intel, he was able to generate cash from operations of $107 billion, made $23.5 billion in dividend payments, and increased the quarterly dividend 181 percent from $0.08 to $0.225.

“I’ve been privileged to lead one of the world’s greatest companies,” Otellini said. “After almost four decades with the company and eight years as CEO, it’s time to move on and transfer Intel’s helm to a new generation of leadership. I look forward to working with Andy, the board and the management team during the six-month transition period, and to being available as an advisor to management after retiring as CEO.”

The future of Intel

At the moment, no one is lined up to replace Otellini.  The board of directors will conduct the proper process to help them decide the best fit for the position.  They will be considering both internal and external candidates for the prestigious role of CEO.

Aside from the announcement of Otellini’s impending retirement, Intel also announced the the promotion of three senior leaders to the position of executive vice president: Renee James, head of Intel’s software business; Brian Krzanich, chief operating officer and head of worldwide manufacturing; and Stacy Smith, chief financial officer and director of corporate strategy.

Potential successors

So who are you betting on to be the next CEO of Intel?  According to AllThingsD, some of the potential successors are Sean Maloney – who ran Intel China after recovering from a stroke and is now retired, Pat Gelsinger – VMware’s CEO, David (Dadi) Perlmutter – currently chief product officer, he’s a well-respected general manager of the Intel Architecture Group, and Brian Krzanich – Intel’S chief operating officer.

It should be noted that every single Intel CEO since Andy Grove has been COO first, so things are looking good for Krzanich.  Also on the short list could be Stacy Smith – Intel chief financial officer, Renée James – head of Intel’s software business, or even Diane Bryant – formerly Intel’s CIO who has been managing its Data Center and Connected Systems group.

Remaining questions and challenges

Whoever the next CEO is, he or she will be facing tough times as there is a significant decline in PC-ownership interest.  They would face the reality of dealing with consumers being more interested in purchasing tablets rather than PCs,  and they would have to ask themselves the following questions: Can Intel bring an ARM competitor?  Will their mobile chips be good enough to compete with ARM? Should they look into other OS aside from Windows?  Those are just some of the important issues that the next CEO would have to face and be ready to provide an answer to them.