A group of disgruntled senior Microsoft executives have been discussing ways to oust CEO Steve Ballmer, according to a report from Peter Lauria of the Daily Beast. The conspirators are upset both about Microsoft’s stagnant share price and his autocratic leadership style. But with Microsoft’s current board unwaveringly loyal to Ballmer, their only hope is to add new board members, or replace old ones with new blood.
“I can’t imagine the board ever going hostile on him,” says one former Microsoft exec. Microsoft’s revenues have more than doubled since Ballmer took over in 2000, but its share price has fallen from $48.93 to $25.12 over the same period anyway. The problem, experts say, is that Microsoft hasn’t innovated or established a presence in growing arenas like mobile devices. “At the end of the day, someone has to be held accountable for the loss in shareholder value,” says one Microsoft adviser. (Read more Steve Ballmer stories.)