Bob Swan, CEO of Intel, who joined the company in early 2019, will be replaced in mid-February by Pat Gelsinger. Intel confirmed that the change in the leadership of the company is not at all related to its financial performance last year. The shakeup took place after weeks of investor activism by hedge fund Third Point to keep up with market changes.
In mid-2020, Intel had said that there would be a substantial delay in its development of the next-generation chip-making process.
The unexpected delay means that the Intels 7-nanometer processing technology is unlikely to be ready until the end of 2022 or early 2023, potentially putting the company behind its market rivals.
The new CEO Gelsinger has been the CEO of software company VMware since 2012 and has a vast experience of four decades in the tech industry. He began his career with Intel Corp., and was its first chief technology officer.
After the change, the semiconductor pioneer will back in the hands of a tech expert when it is struggling. Intel’s stock jumped 7 percent after the news of the change.
Intel acknowledged in late December 2020 that it had received a letter from the New York fund and was working with it on ideas to enhance shareholder value.
Third Point CEO Daniel Loeb tweeted “Swan is a class act and did the right thing for all stakeholders by stepping aside for Gelsinger.” Intel spokesman William Moss said the changeover was not driven by Third Point. Intel Chairman Omar Ishrak remarked, “The board took a decision that it is the right time to make the leadership change during this critical period.”
Swan was a Chief Financial Officer at Intel, and he assumed interim leadership in 2018 after CEO Brian Krzanich resigned. Intel confirmed Swan as CEO in early 2019.
Swan joined Intel as CFO in October 2016 from General Atlantic, after spending many years as CFO at eBay, Electronic Data Systems, and TRW Inc. He also supported f the change and said in a statement that it is the right time for a transition and he happy about Gelsinger’s arrival.