Intel Corp released a statement on Thursday in which it announced that their President Renee James would be stepping down to seek a chief executive position elsewhere. The statement added that she would stay with the company through January.
This was one of a number of management changes announced as CEO Brian Krzanich pushes the chip maker to move more quickly in recovering lost sales volumes.
The changes come in the wake of the declining sales of PCs that use the company’s microprocessors. Efforts to move into other markets have not met with much success, with very few smartphones using chips produced by Intel, while its sale of chips for tablets required costly subsidies, triggering operating losses.
Ms. James, who is one of the most senior female executives in Silicon Valley, joined Intel as a product manager in 1987 and steadily worked her way up the corporate ladder. She had been executive vice-president of software and service before her appointment as President was announced in May 2013.
Another long serving Intel staffer, Brian Krzanich, was appointed CEO at the same time to a position some had considered would go to Renee James.
At the time of these appointments, James had told Oregon Live, “I work for Brian but the rest of the company works for Brian and I. We put the strategy together as a team”.
Moor Insight & Strategy President and principal analyst, Patrick Moorhead, said that James who had served four years as technical assistant to CEO Andy Grove, had most of her experience in software without the requisite hardware experience to assume the CEO position at that stage.
Intel is going through difficult times as consumers turn to mobile gadgets as their primary devices, while the company has not been successful in producing chips for battery powered connected devices.
In order to recover lost revenue, Intel has had to resort to buying startups such as Basis or Recon as part of its move into the wearable market. Intel is also making strenuous efforts to establish its chips in a leading position in the massive data centers running the world’s cloud operations. The company also announced the purchase of Altera, a custom-chip maker for $16.7 billion, last month.
Patrick Moorhead is of the opinion that Renee James has a CEO position locked elsewhere and that this will be announced at a later stage. Her next move will be closely watched considering her ranking at Number 21 on Fortune's list of the most powerful women in business.
MT4 Chart: Intel