Intel CEO Paul Otellini to retire in surprise move

Paul Otellini_0.jpg.crop_display.jpg

Intel CEO Paul Otellini is retiring in May, giving the world’s largest maker of microprocessors six months to find a new leader as it confronts two major challenges: a shaky economy and a shift toward mobile devices that is reducing demand for its PC chips.

Although Otellini’s impending departure was announced on Monday, he notified Intel Corp’s board of his retirement plan last Wednesday. The decision surprised Intel’s board of directors, which had been expecting Otellini to remain CEO until the company’s customary retirement age of 65. Otellini is 62.

“The decision was entirely Paul’s,” said Intel spokesman Paul Bergevin. “The board accepted his decision with regret.”

Otellini will be ending a nearly 40-year career with Intel, including an eight-year stint as CEO by the time he leaves.

He joined the Santa Clara, California company after graduating from the nearby University of California at Berkeley and worked his way up the ranks before succeeding Craig Barrett as CEO in May 2005.

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