Tag Archives: Steve Ballmer

Ballmer Leaving Microsoft within the Year

MS CEO Steve Ballmer Stepping Down
MS CEO Steve Ballmer Stepping Down

An indication of the displeasure stockholders have had with Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer is the fact that upon the announcement that he will soon be leaving Microsoft’s stock price rose more than 8 percent. When investors calmed down a bit from the happy news the stock did return to a more reasonable level.

Celebrating Ballmer’s departure are critics who point out that he placed the future of Microsoft in the hands of the wrong products, fell behind in the race to the switch to mobile computing, was not really up to the task of choosing good design options, and, to top all these mistakes, is also a poor public speaker.

Microsoft has not yet picked Ballmer’s successor. Recent reorganization at Microsoft did not make it a priority to establish a natural process for succession. Therefore for the next 12 months Ballmer will stay put while John Thompson, the company’s leading independent director, heads up the search committee.

Bill Gates is also on the search committee, so be prepared for his name to be floated as a possible replacement for Ballmer, but this option seems unlikely. More probable is one of the following candidates:

Tony Bates: Executive at Skype, this past summer he also managed business development for Microsoft. He was at Cisco Systems for a while.

Julie Larson-Green: She was once considered Ballmer’s natural successor. Microsoft’s reorganization placed Green at the top of MS’s devices division.

Qi Lu: Veteran of Yahoo search, Lu also worked on Bing for MS and came out as another winner in the MS makeover this summer. He is now the head of apps and services.

Five other possibilities include Tami Reller, Steven Sinofsky, Stephen Elop, Paul Maritz and Kevin Johnson.

In case you have been feeling bad about Ballmer losing his job, his 333 million shares in Microsoft should help him ease his transition.

Facebook…A New Bubble?

Mark Zuckerberg When asked “how much is Facebook?” it was impossible until now to give a precise answer. In the past there was an initial indication of the value of the company founded by Mark Zuckerberg (26 years).  After all, Fritz Lanman, director of Microsoft’s strategy, recently admitted that his company had tried to buy the social network in 2007. The Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer went to the Facebook headquarters in Palo Alto, California: he had met Mark Zuckerberg, who has confessed that at 23 he had been trying to raise money on basis of a valuation of $ 15 billion.

This figure does not seem so fanciful that Steve Ballmer, since it began offering $ 15 billion to Mark Zuckerberg to get their hands on 100% of capital. Not wanting to lose control of his company, the president of Facebook declined. Steve Ballmer did not throw in the towel for Facebook completely and in October 2007, the publisher acquired a 1.6% share in the company equal to $240 million. A quick rule of three gives a valuation of $ 15 billion. At that time, the social network had 60 million subscribers, was valued $ 250 each. Since then the number of people on Facebook has exploded and it has now reached 600 million. The value of Facebook has not been multiplied by ten so far, “only” by 3.3.

The complex financing package raised some questions about the valuation of Facebook. The U.S. bank has not actually invested $ 450 million directly in Facebook. A fund, which was created for the occasion of the acquisition connected to these FBDC Investors LPis said to be registered in Delaware. If this proves true, the choice of this American state is not without reason: it is considered a tax haven for companies that are registered, non-taxation of profits made out of Delaware. The objective of Goldman Sachs was to offer its “best customers” to invest in this fund, according to its statutes can acquire up to $ 1.5 billion of securities Facebook, pocketing the passage of juicy commissions.