Microsoft won't be announcing the name of its next CEO until early 2014.
That's the word from the head of the CEO Search Committee and Board Member John W. Thompson.
While many of us Microsoft watchers had been hearing talk that Microsoft would name its new CEO before this year was out, that's not happening, after all.
From Thompson's December 17 update on "The Official Microsoft Blog":
"We identified over 100 possible candidates, talked with several dozen, and then focused our energy intensely on a group of about 20 individuals, all extremely impressive in their own right. As you would expect, as this group has narrowed, we’ve done deeper research and investigation, including with the full Board. We’re moving ahead well, and I expect we’ll complete our work in the early part of 2014."
In August, Microsoft announced Ballmer would be retiring within a year's time.
Ballmer said in August that the Microsoft board had been discussing succession planning for the past 10 years.
"I'd say three or four years ago, I agreed to a project with the board where I would meet a bunch of people outside Microsoft who we should have on our radar screen as, you know, potential interesting people outside of Microsoft who might become CEO, and I've reported back to the board on those interactions," Ballmer told me in August.
There have been plenty of rumors since August about who might be on the next Microsoft CEO short list. Among those allegedly (and maybe even actually) in the running have been Ford CEO Alan Mullally, Microsoft Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner, Microsoft Cloud & Enterprise Chief Satya Nadella, Microsoft Evangelism Chief Tony Bates and Pivotal CEO Paul Maritz. Qualcomm COO Steve Mollenkopf also may have been in the running for the Microsoft CEO job, as he was abruptly appointed Qualcomm CEO after Bloomberg reported he might be a candidate.
There's a special Ford analyst meeting this Wednesday. Supposedly, one goal is to share more definitive information as to whether Mulally is actively considering the Microsoft CEO job.