Intel Moving Too Slowly For New President

April 14, 2016, 8:36 PM UTC
Tinker Toys offers young kids the possibility to design their own toys on the internet, have them printed out and sent to them. / AFP / John MACDOUGALL (Photo credit should read JOHN MACDOUGALL/AFP/Getty Images)
Photograph by JOHN MACDOUGALL — AFP/Getty Images

Intel hired Venkata “Murthy” Renduchintala away from Qualcomm last fall to shake up the chipmaker’s lagging efforts in several key businesses.

That shake-up appears to be in full swing.

Two weeks after two of his top reports held over from the prior regime left the company, Renduchintala is reorganizing the leadership structure overseeing six of the Intel’s most important projects, according to a memo obtained by the Oregonian newspaper.

The rare, high-level Intel (INTC) executive to come from the outside the company said in the memo that he had just completed a review of the six projects. They included the company’s next three major chip designs, known by the codenames Kaby Lake, Cannon Lake, and Ice lake as well as the 7560 baseband modem, which is meant to finally propel Intel into the smartphone game.

“There is a clear trend that has emerged in these reviews – a lack of product/customer focus in execution that is creating schedule and competitiveness gaps in our products,” wrote Renduchintala.

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As a result, Renduchintala said he was establishing new, three-person leadership teams drawn from across the company to oversee each of the projects. “I will need your help in quickly identifying the best internal people to fill these important roles, and where appropriate, place the right external hires in these roles to drive success,” he wrote.

Intel’s dominance in the PC era hasn’t translated to success in the current mobile-dominated period, though the chip maker has won plenty of business making processors for servers used in massive cloud computing facilities. Renduchintala oversees both the slowly eroding PC chip unit and Intel’s move to build chips for automated devices in the so-called Internet of things movement.

Two weeks ago, Intel announced that Doug Davis, who oversaw the company’s modest $2 billion Internet of things group, would retire at the end of the year. Also departing was Kirk Skaugen, head of Intel’s massive $34 billion client computing group encompassing phone, tablet, and PC platforms.

Intel declined to comment.

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