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CEO succession at 5 big tech


The planned retirement of Intel’s Sean Maloney in 2013 has ignited speculation over who might replace Paul Otellini, the firm’s chief. Maloney, a charismatic 30-year Intel (INTC) vet, came back to run the company’s $8 billion China business after surviving a massive stroke in 2010 and seemed the obvious candidate. The 56-year-old stepped down to spend time with family. As for Otellini, he became CEO in 2005 after a long stint at the chipmaker. But at 62, he now is close to the firm’s mandatory retirement age of 65. COO Brian Krzanich, 52, seems a likely successor. (Otellini, Craig Barrett, and Andy Grove were all COO before taking the top job.) CFO Stacy Smith, 50, and chief product officer David “Dadi” Perlmutter are also possibilities. But Perlmutter, 58, will himself be close to retirement age by the time Otellini leaves.


Tim Cook

CEO of Apple (AAPL) since 2011

The operations whiz, 51, may eventually be succeeded by a younger, Jobsian visionary …

Scott Forstall

Senior VP, iOS

… like the 43-year-old mobile-software chief. He runs Apple’s cash-cow iPhone business.


Steve Ballmer

CEO of Microsoft (MSFT) since 2000

Ballmer, 56, has been criticized for Microsoft’s lackluster performance in handsets and search.

Steven Sinofsky

President, Windows and Windows Live

A smooth launch of Windows 8 could propel the 46-year-old.

Cisco Systems

John Chambers

CEO of Cisco (CSCO) since 1995

The 63-year-old chief recently said he may retire within the next four years.

Robert Lloyd

EVP, Worldwide Operations

Lloyd, 56, has hung in for two decades and is frequently named as a possible next in line.


Larry Ellison

CEO of Oracle (ORCL) since 1977

After 3 1/2 decades, the feisty 68-yearold shows no signs of slowing down.

Safra Catz

Co-President and CFO

Does the veteran, 50, have the upper hand for succession over co-president Mark Hurd?