At this point, there aren’t that many people who’ve worked at Intel as long as CEO Paul Otellini has. But after 40 years at the 45-year-old chip maker — the last eight of them as CEO — he’s hanging up his stirrups this May. His timing couldn’t be better.
Otellini ushered Intel through some of its most profitable years, hitting record revenue and income marks time and again since 2005. He was at the helm when Intel got ahead of Moore’s law, and provided the carrot that drove sluggish OEMs to finally dive into ultrabooks.
But the company’s path forward is a little less clear; it’s failed to make any meaningful inroads into mobile, and not a year goes by without a rumour that Apple will either defect or start producing its own laptop and desktop processors. Intel is still the international standard bearer for computer guts (especially with AMD in freefall), but it’s going to need to shake things up if it wants to remain dominant in the mobile age.
There’s no indication yet of who’s going to take Otellini’s place; the board will “consider internal and external candidates”, and presumably it will get someone lined up quickly. Whoever the board finds, that person had better be ready to go to work. [Bloomberg]