Bob Swan takes over top leadership spot as chipmaker wrestles with economic, production challenges
Intel’s CEO office no longer has a temporary occupant. The chipmaker’s board made Bob Swan, who’s held the interim post for the past seven months, the permanent CEO.
The Lowdown: Swan takes over for Brian Krzanich, who resigned as CEO last summer after it was disclosed that he had a consensual relationship with a subordinate in violation of company policy.
The Details: Swan has been with Intel since 2016, serving as its CFO. He’s been part of the leadership team transforming Intel from a processor manufacturer to a company with a diverse portfolio of products ranging from components to Internet of Things devices.
The Impact: The official takeover comes as Intel grapples with production and inventory issues trickling down to its OEM server and PC manufacturers and their downstream reseller partners. While Swan called 2018 an “outstanding year” for Intel, the vendor misforecast production of its Xeon and Core processors, which caused inventory shortfalls. Those shortfalls hit at a time when the PC market saw a surprising increase in demand. The result: missed sales targets up and down the PC channel.
Intel, under Swan’s direction, pledged to invest more in processor manufacturing capacity and to increase output to meet market demand. Analysts anticipate PC sales will recover as Intel’s production and inventories return to normal.
Background: Increasing processor output and diversifying its portfolio may not be enough for Intel though. Earlier this month, the company lowered its forecast for 2019, citing the trade war with China, general economic uncertainty, and political instability in Washington.
Conversely, rival AMD is projecting growth in 2019, as it sees increasing sales of its processors for graphical and data center environments.
The Buzz: “As Intel continues to transform its business to capture more of a large and expanding opportunity that includes the data center, artificial intelligence,
“This is an exciting time for Intel: 2018 was an outstanding year and we are in the midst of transforming the company to pursue our biggest market opportunity ever,” said Swan. “I’m honored to have the chance to continue working alongside our board, our leadership team, and our more than 107,000 superb employees as we take the company forward.”