Report: Satya Nadella to be named Microsoft CEO; Gates out, too

Bloomberg moots he may be replaced by John Thompson

Microsoft's Satya Nadella

Microsoft's Satya Nadella

Microsoft's Cloud chief, Satya Nadella, will lead the company as its next chief executive, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Microsoft's board is "preparing to name" Nadella chief executive, Bloomberg reported on Thursday afternoon (US time). Nadella, whose official title is executive vice-president of Microsoft's Cloud and Enterprise group, had been one of the front-runners in the race to replace current chief executive Steve Ballmer, who said last August that he planned to step down within a year.

But the board is also considering replacing Bill Gates as chairman of the company, Bloomberg reported, ousting the company's co-founder and possibly replacing him with John Thompson, Microsoft's lead independent director. If Gates is to go, as PCWorld suggested last year, it would remove two of Microsoft's iconic employees from the software giant.

The problem with replacing Ballmer or Gates, is that no one executive at Microsoft has traversed the range of the company's products, which include consumer businesses like the Xbox, cloud services such as Azure, the company's Windows business, server and development services like Visual Studio, and an emerging mobile business, too.

Nadella, 44, is an Indian-born engineer with degrees in electronics, computer science (from the University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee), and business administration (from the University of Chicago). Nadella has worked since 1992 at Microsoft, and is credited with launching BizTalk, Microsoft's Commerce Server, and Microsoft's Office Small Business products.

However, Nadella is most famous for having overseen Microsoft's online initiatives, where he transformed Windows Live Search into Bing. The market share for Microsoft's search offering stands at 18.2 percent, according to Microsoft's recent earnings.

One problem that naysayers point to: Nadella has no experience as a chief executive, unlike internal rivals like Tony Bates, who ran Skype, and external candidates like Alan Mulally of Ford, who took himself out of the running in early January, saying he was committed to Ford.

So far, Ballmer's commitment has been to a "devices and services" strategy. If Nadella is named CEO, its unclear whether he'd commit to that direction. On the other hand, his track record indicates that he can fulfill at least one half of that strategy.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags cloud computingmanagementMicrosoftskypesoftwareWindowsFordsteve ballmerbill gatesazureXboxbingSatya Nadella

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Mark Hachman

Mark Hachman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?