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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

January 31, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Gates to step down as chairman in exchange for spending more time at company?

Following on yesterday’s report, from Bloomberg, that Microsoft’s board was preparing to name Satya Nadella as CEO and that it was discussing replacing Bill Gates as chairman, comes this interesting analysis today from Re/code’s Kara Swisher on why Gates might be willing to step down from the chairmanship.

Among the reasons she cites:

  • Perhaps Gates will be spending more time at the company to help aid Nadella, if he is named CEO. (Swisher notes that sources have said Nadella has asked Gates to do so.) In order to have that time, Gates may want to spend less time performing chairmanship duties.
  • It could be good for the board to have a fresher start, without the looming presence of the company co-founder as chairman.

Nadella has indeed asked Gates to assist him and to “spend more time on technology and strategy,” according to The Wall Street Journal, which says Microsoft’s board is in contract talks with Nadella for the CEO position. The Journal report cites an unidentified “person familiar with the matter.”

The board is expected to meet next week.

Comments | More in Microsoft | Topics: bill gates, ceo, satya nadella

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