Giant Korean company Samsung looks set to shuffle its leadership following a year which has seen its mobile fortunes dip.
The Wall Street Journal, quoting people “familiar with the matter” is tipping the toppling of mobile head JK Shin – he’s the co-CEO of a company that has made in its time everything from motor cars to aircraft jet engines.
And if Shin loses his job, it could be to another co-CEO, BK Yoon, a man in charge of its TV and washing machine businesses.
The job could however go to its third co-CEO, Kwon Oh-hyun. He’s a semiconductor man and also looks after Samsung’s display panels.
The reason why Samsung has this unusual triumvirate in place is because its chairman Lee Kun-hee had a heart attack this year and is out of play at the chaebol.
Samsung is under pressure from companies in China and in India that don’t have the large overhead it has in terms of manufacturing and headcount.
In the UK, heads have already rolled and the company is still looking to appoint a replacement after the last appointee only lasted a few months.
IBM has reshuffled its senior management in a bid to turn around the outfit’s flagging fortunes.
Martin Jetter, who was credited with fixing Biggish Blue’s Japanese operation has been shifted to senior vice president and head of its global technology services unit.
Jetter, who currently heads IBM’s operations in Japan, will initially report to Erich Clemanti and will succeed him as head of the services unit on January 1, when Clemanti will move to another unnamed senior leadership role.
IBM CEO Ginni Rometty said that Jetter was Big Blue’s Mr Fixit and led a remarkable transformation of IBM Japan, returning it to growth. Previously he did the same thing with IBM Germany and GBS in Europe. “In each case, he and his team have moved quickly to embrace new approaches and new thinking,” Rometty said.
IBM has been falling behind as it struggles to keep up with shifts in the industry as hardware becomes increasingly commoditized. Lately, the outfit which was once best known for mainframe computers, has been moving to higher-margin businesses such as security software and cloud services, but growth in those areas has failed to offset other company weaknesses.
Last month, IBM paid $1.5 billion to Globalfoundries to take its loss-making semiconductor unit off its hands.
AMD has hired a former Dell senior executive to lead the chipmaker’s push into microservers.
AMD said that Forrest Norrod will be senior vice president and general manager of AMD’s enterprise, embedded and semi-custom business group and report to Chief Executive Lisa Su.
Norrod, 49, ran Dell’s server business and joins AMD as the company develops chips for new low-power servers that might challenge heavyweight Intel in cutting-edge data centres.
AMD has been expanding into new markets including low-power “microservers” and game consoles, but progress has been slow.
Earlier this month, Su took over as CEO, replacing Rory Read. Norrod fills Su’s previous position, which she had held temporarily since July.
Following Su’s appointment as CEO, AMD announced on Oct. 16 it was cutting 7 percent of its workforce to reduce costs.
Dell was the man behind the creation of Dell’s first internal startup focused on the hyper-scale datacentre market as the vice president and general manager, Data Center Solutions (DCS). He held several engineering leadership roles previously at Dell, starting as CTO of Client Products before leading Enterprise Engineering and ultimately having responsibility for all of Dell’s global engineering teams.
Prior to Dell, he ran the integrated x86 CPU business at Cyrix and National Semiconductor.
As Google continues to be investigated by the European Union, chairman Eric Schmidt has decided to deflect criticism by saying that Amazon is its biggest search rival.
In a speech in Berlin, Schmidt – who has repeatedly denied that Google is a monopolistic player – he also took time to diss rivals Bing and Yahoo, saying they don’t matter at all.
According to the BBC, Schmidt said that people didn’t see Amazon as a search engine but most people go there when they want to buy something, rather than Google.
How Schmidt thinks this kind of argument will have any weight with the European Union is hard to fathom.
He said: “Amazon is answering users’ questions and searches, just as we are.”
Google isn’t the be and end of it all, added Schmidt. In a note of paranoia he suggested that somewhere will be new technology that will topple it from its premier position.
Two senior executives from non technology sectors have been appointed to the board of Microsoft, while two existing board members have stepped down.
Microsoft said that Teri List-Stoll, chief financial officer of Kraft Foods and Charles W. Scharf, CEO of Visa, will take up their new positions on the 1st of October.
At the same time, Dave Marquardt and Dina Dublon are to retire from the board following Microsoft’s annual shareholders meeting in December. The board constitues 12 individuals.
Scharf, 49, pictured has been CEO of Visa since November 2012 and before that was a senior executive at JP Morgan Chase. List-Stoll, 51, from Kraft previously worked at Procter and Gamble.
Microsoft’s chairman, John Thompson said the appointments were to help the company transform itself into something completely different.
CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella said that List-Stoll brings “exceptional” financial and operational expertise and had wide knowledge from working for decades in consumer and retail industries. Scharf brings a “deep understanding of how commerce is changing globally”.
In one of those strange twists of fate that dog the semiconductor industry, it appears X86 giant Intel is now one of the biggest licensees of ARM tech on the planet, now it is a foundry business. ARM, of course, offers an advantage over X86 servers in terms of both functionality and heat. Intel is considerably boosting ARM revenues, according to well informed sources close to the facts.
Actually, INTC has always had a lot of foundry business. It was forced by American authorities to guarantee that production of DEC’s Alpha microprocessor continued until the end of the decade, as we reported earlier at the INQster and the Rogister years back. Intel also had and probably still has a StrongARM licence – an opportunity Chipzilla signally missed back in the days.
It also still makes HP chips. Perhaps that is because of the peculiar nature of the partnership between Intel and HP.
Intel reacted very badly to the news.
Anna Cheng, the UK spinner for Intel, sent a snottogram to the Eyes saying that the world+dog knew it made ARM chips. She said that she objected to the fact that the Eyes blank carbon copied other people at Intel – including Chuck Mulloy – asking for clarification. She scolded the Eyes for not going through proper channels.
We responded by saying that we had in our possession many Intel “confidential” emails describing me – in no uncertain terms – as an old buffer.
ARM refused to comment, but it is quids in because of Intel’s decision to fab up the unique British designs…
Because Intel has so few products to show at its expensive upcoming Intel Developer Forum in September in San Francisco, it will play its old three card trick and show off new logos and marketing plans instead. Ailing Intel, it seems, has run out of “innovation”.
That’s according to reliable sources within the corporation that told the Eyes that newly formed CEOs need marketing ideas because product ideas are few on the ground.
The source – based in Asia – told the Eyes that it had attempted to convince ex CEO Paul Otellini that the marketing needed changing to a retro kind of thing, but had come up against determined opposition from the then CEO.
But facing ruin because it was slow off the mark with chips for tablets and for smartphones, instead Intel will attempt to bamboozle the world with marketing. The newly born CEO – and the INTC board are up for it.
The re-branding will re-position Intel as a 21st century company that doesn’t really invent technology any more. Just manufacture it.
Although we don’t have the new logos and that yet, expect a blast of marketing publicity that talks a lot about not very much at all, faced with the opposition. Oh, that’s not AMD, by the way.
Gadget king and dancing queen Steve Wozniak thinks smartwatches have got a long way to go before being useful.
Woz, who was the co-founder of Apple, was a well-known early adopter of shiny new toys. He owns a Segway and has a Tesla Motors’ electric-powered car. He also has an interest in getting a smartwatch that is useful.
Wozniak told xconomy that smartwatches will not be useful until the screens get bigger. He thinks foldable, plastic displays could be the answer to that problem.
He also thinks they will be useless until you can get the whole smartphone on your wrist and not a Bluetooth connection to the smartphone in your pocket.
Samsung, Pebble, and Qualcomm are among the companies that have come out with smartwatches, but thus far, Wozniak’s favorite is one made by Martian. It doesn’t have a touch screen, but a tiny display below the watch hands indicates who is calling, and the watch has a good speaker, Wozniak said.
The worst smartwatch that Woz was the Samsung Galaxy Gear which he sold on eBay because it was so worthless and did so little that was convenient.
The interview did not reveal anything about what Woz thought of the coming Apple iWatch and whether it would tick any of his boxes. Our guess is that it didn’t.
Mega distie Avnet said it has set up a new business unit in the European, Middle East and Africa markets.
The dvision, called Avnet Security and Networking Solutions (ASNS), is intended to boost its share of this sector and will include the opening of specialist technical and commercial competence centres in the region.
Network security is predicted to be worth over $10 billion in revenues, according to market research firm IDC.
The first commercial competence centre will open in the Netherlands this quarter, and be a hub for delivering security and networking services.
Graeme Watt, president of Avnet in EMEA said his company will use existing people in the company to bring in external specialist skills to bolster the market.
Miriam Murphy (pictured) is to become a senor VP of Avnet’s northern region – that’s the UK and Ireland.
She replaces interim head of the territory Tony Madden, who has run the UK business over the last six months.
Murphy is a long time employee of Avnet and she was responsible for expanding its IBM business across 14 countries in the EMEA region, according to Graeme Watt, president of Avnet EMEA.
Murphy said the channel is changing but there are some opportunities for distribution and for partners in security, big data, analytics, conveged infrastructure and other services.
Kevin Vine is to be a VP of Connected Data and will expand the company’s channel efforts.
Vine has previously worked for Buffalo and for megadistie Ingram Micro.
He will continue to work with disties including Ingram, CMS, Comline and Beta Distribution but will also aim to boost the number of channel partners selling the Drobo “smart storage” range and the Transporter cloud offering.
Vine said that these brands “present a compelling proposition to build a major channel business across EMEA”. He said the technology is outstanding and the business potential to sell and integrate the products is “excellent”.
In the role, he will report to Jillian Mansolf, executive BP of global sales at Connected. CEO Geoff Barrall said he has a background in building US product market share in the region. Connected will concentrate on building its sales, marketing and technical support in the region as part of a major push in the second half of this year.
Diversity and change are cited for the reasons that there’s been a reshuffle at HP Enterprise Group channel personnel. Diversity and change. Change and diversity – those two magic words say so much and at the same time so very little.
Out is Kevin Matthews while in is Johnny Ansell.
Ansell is the new UK and Ireland indirect director for HP’s enterprise group. He’s been at HP for fifteen years but most lately ran the HP networking business for the last 10 quarters. Who has replaced him at the networking business remains a mystery.
According to a statement from Andy Isherwood, HP’s managing director, Matthews and others have driven “continuous growth” for over five years.
Isherwood cited his achievements as growth, relationships, and “innovation”.
What’s happened to Matthews? HP isn’t ready to say but Isherwood said he will let us know, “once we have fully transitioned the channel business to the new leader”. Happy transitioning.
Anup Vora has been appointed reseller channel manager by Swivel Secure.
Last year, Swivel moved to a single tier channel way of selling and the company said this appointment is its next stage in its reseller programme.
Swivel has authentication products and the company believes resellers can include its offerings as part of their enterprise portolios.
Vora said that demand for authentication in the enterprises has never been higher. “Resellers should be bundling security as standard,” he said. “Multi-factor authentication shouldn’t be overlooked.” It’s an incremental revenue stream for resellers, he added.
Vora has had years of experience in building channels including jobs at SMS Passcode and Check Point Software.
Marc van Ierland has been made country manager of its Benelux district which includes Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands.
van Ierland has over 20 years experience in distribution and has been at Avnet since November 2007 after the company acquired ACAL.
Andrew Binding, VP at Avnet EMEA South said that he is a well known and respected individual with a proven track record in developing and managing highly motivated teams.
He previously managed the IBM, Oracle, networking, security and document management business units in the region.
Stan Shih, who came out of retirement to rescue Acer from its parlous state, has apparently been busy since his return.
Smartphone supremo Chen Guowei has apparently left Acer to spend more time with his family. Guowei was in charge of Acer’s business unit in mainland China.
And the net has spread wider, according to Taiwanese wire Digitimes, the head of EMEA operations, Walter Deppeler, is set to leave the company too.
The company plans to cut as many as seven percent of its global workforce. Like other PC manufacturers, Acer has been hit by a drop in demand for X86 based systems and a widespread move to smartphones and tablets that aren’t Acer tablets.