It looks unlikely that Alan Mulally is going to be Microsoft’s next CEO.
Ford board member Edsel Ford II told Bloomberg, “Alan is staying through the end of 2014 and that’s all I know.”
This suggests Mulally isn’t going to join Microsoft. Mulally was the reported front runner to be Microsoft CEO, replacing Steve Ballmer who is retiring.
Microsoft’s stock is falling on the news. It’s off by 3.2%.
“Frankly, he has told us that his plan is to stay with Ford through the end of 2014,” said Ford.
Mulally himself has been fairly evasive on the topic, but told Bloomberg, “I love serving Ford … I have no change to the plan.”
These aren’t definitive statements. There is still wiggle room for Mulally. If he really wasn;t going to join Microsoft, he’d just come out and say, “No way. I am not going to leave Ford for Microsoft.”
But, this doesn’t look good for Microsoft. It seems more likely than not that he’s not going to Redmond.
This seems to be a big blow for Microsoft. Mulally was seen as a good CEO choice because of his talents as a manager and a turnaround specialist.
The idea was for Mulally to come to Microsoft and cut out the rot and bloat, focus the company and make it a leaner, faster organisation.
With Mulally out of the picture, the leading candidates for CEO now seem to be (in order of most likely to least likely): Satya Nadella, who runs Microsoft’s booming Servers & Tools group; Tony Bates, who came to Microsoft as CEO of Skype; and Stephen Elop, CEO of Microsoft.