Intel replaces its CEO with VMware's Pat Gelsinger

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"Intel today announced that its board of directors has appointed 40-year technology industry leader Pat Gelsinger as its new chief executive officer, effective February 15, 2021", the company said in a statement.

Swan's finance background, including top finance roles at eBay and several other firms, marked a shift for Intel, which has mostly had engineers at the top since its 1968 founding, though its fifth CEO was an economist. During that time, he successfully guided the company, whose software helps companies squeeze more work out of data centre servers, through the transition from privately owned data centres to public cloud providers, in part by striking a seminal deal with Amazon.com's Amazon Web Services. Before that, however, Gelsinger was Intel through and through, having spent 30 years at the company from 1979 to 2009.

In a letter to Intel's employees, Gelsinger likened the move to coming "home". "We have transformed the global technology landscape for the better, and I am confident that the company will continue to excel as they enable customers with the digital foundation for an unpredictable world". Intel is expected to make the decision this month.

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Bob Swan speaks during an Intel press event for CES 2020 in Las Vegas in January 2020. Third Point CEO Daniel Loeb tweeted on Wednesday that "Swan is a class act and did the right thing for all stake holders stepping aside for Gelsinger".

As for Swan, Intel said his departure had nothing to do with the company's financial performance. "The next two or three years are set in stone regardless of who is there". After a search, Intel confirmed Swan as CEO in early 2019.

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