Citrix Systems CEO Mark Templeton, 61, has decided not to retire after all, at least for a few more years.
In January, he said that 2014 would be it for him. But on Thursday, the company said that Templeton changed his mind and made “a multiyear commitment” to stay on as CEO.
It used to be that age 60 was considered the polite age for a tech CEO to retire. IBM, for instance, has a long tradition of retirement at 60. Rumour has it that former CEO, Sam Palmisano, wanted IBM to break that rule for him, but no-go. Ginni Rometty was anointed as planned.
But these days, the trend is for tech CEOs, particularly in the enterprise market, to hang on (and on), postponing their retirement, sometimes multiple times, well past age 60.
It could be Oracle cofounder and CEO Larry Ellison who is the trendsetter here. He will be 70 in August, and even though he’s the longest-running CEO in the industry (since 1977), he doesn’t even talk about retirement.
EMC’s Joe Tucci will be 67 soon, too. In 2012, at age 65, he was going to retire, until he changed his mind and said he’ll stay on until at least 2015. After that, we’ll see.
Another one is Cisco’s John Chambers who will be 65 in August. He’s been talking about retirement for years, always in the context of: not now. Last time he talked about it, he said he would stay on until at least 2014 (sparking a recent crop of rumours that he’ll announce retirement in the fall), but he also said he may stay on until 2016. So, then again, who knows?
Like Ellison, Philippe Courtot is 69. He’s CEO of Qualys, an Internet security company that went public in 2012. After leading multiple companies to sale or IPO, and angel investing in many more, he came out of retirement to run Qualys. He invested seed money in Qualys then got talked into the CEO job in 2001. And has been going strong in the corner office ever since.