Microsoft CEO finalist, the enterprise play and no more Gates?

According to a tweet by Bloomberg, Microsoft’s search for a CEO has come to an end, and the company is preparing to announce its new leader to the world.  The named replacement, or shall we say successor is Satya Nadella.  Nadella is a Microsoft veteran, with over 20 years at the company.  He boasts strong engineering credentials and has seen a variety of company successes and not-so-successes during his tenure.

Microsoft’s board is preparing to name Satya Nadella CEO, sources tell us.

— Dina Bass (@dinabass) January 30, 2014

Kara Swisher notes on Nadella:

That’s due to a number of reasons, including his familiarity with the company, where he has spent much of his career, as well as a strong technical background and a varied work history at Microsoft.

Nadella came to Microsoft in 1992 from Sun Microsystems. And, said many, he has recently spent a lot more time over the last few months in Silicon Valley, which — to be fair — is part of his current job.

In addition, according to the Bloomberg report, a familiar face may not be around much longer as it appears that the board is looking to replace Bill Gates as its chairman.  Gates stepped down from duties as CEO some time ago and has faded from the company’s public image ever since.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT)’s board is preparing to make Satya Nadella, the company’s enterprise and cloud chief, chief executive officer and is discussing replacing Bill Gates as chairman, according to people with knowledge of the process.

Nadella is a strong figure that reinforces one of Microsoft’s enterprise play.  Just a week ago, John Furrier blasted all of Ballmer’s critics on the company’s strong earnings reports.

Microsoft has no CEO and they are killing it in business performance.  Looks like Steve Ballmer was right: the company isn’t in bad shape.  Maybe it was the dumb press that called for his head. Steve had a smile on his face today as Microsoft Corp. announced revenue of $24.52 billion for the quarter ending December 31, 2013. Gross margin, operating income, net income, and diluted earnings per share for the quarter were $16.24 billion, $7.97 billion, $6.56 billion, and $0.78 per share, respectively.

Maybe Microsoft should go without a CEO for a few more quarters.

Microsoft –  ALL ENTERPRISE?


The fact that Nadella comes from a background of Microsoft’s strongest divisions speaks volumes to the company’s possible future direction.  Having Online services, Office, Bing and Server products lines is an impressive enterprise play that indicates the company may just drop all pretenses in the consumer market and play to their strengths as an enterprise services company.  That being said, they have wildly successful gaming products and consumer services in their portfolio that will no doubt be sustained through R&D, marketing and so on.  Bottom line: forget about Microsoft getting into the trenches with Apple and the like – they’re probably going to shoot for Google, Amazon and anyone else they encounter in the enterprise space.

photo credit: nosha via photopin cc