Top Microsoft Investors Want to Boot Bill Gates
Small group doesn't want him picking the next CEO
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Oct 2, 2013 7:31 AM CDT
Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft, talks at the Clinton Global Initiative, Sept. 24, 2013 in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

(Newser) – Three of Microsoft's top 20 investors are calling for the head of Mr. Microsoft himself. It's been a long time since Gates actively ran the company, but he's still chairman of the board, and is on the special committee that will select a new CEO. The board has already said that the new CEO will be following through on Steve Ballmer's device-based strategy, and the investors don't think he or she should have to, Reuters reports.

Collectively, the three agitators control 5% of Microsoft's stock. That's not enough to force the software giant to act—Gates alone owns 4.5%, as the company's largest single shareholder. But it's the first significant push against the company's founder, and it could gain momentum. "This is long overdue," said the portfolio manager at one shareholder. "Replacing the old guard with some fresh eyes can provide the oxygen needed." Others disagree. "The company has been missing a technology visionary," another analyst says. "Bill would fit the bill."

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Oct 2, 2013 7:05 PM CDT
I've met Bill Gates in person and heard him speak dozens of times. He's brilliant, he's a visionary, and those three investors would be wise to seek more input from him, not less! Maybe they are the same guys that thought it was a good idea to fire Steve Jobs in 1985. There are a ton of 8" Windows tablets coming out in November from Lenovo, Toshiba, Dell, etc. The Lenovo costs considerably less than an iPad mini, is about the same thickness and weight, and runs real genuine Windows 8.1 (not RT) on a quad core Intel processor and comes with full Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint) for free! I suspect these new devices, unlike the surface and Windows Phone, will do incredibly well, and these three investors will start to re-think their "do not focus on devices" strategy.
Oct 2, 2013 10:47 AM CDT
Willy is busy making condoms. Leave Willy alone!
Oct 2, 2013 10:05 AM CDT
Bill might have fit the bill before the turn of the century.