Will Bill Gates Step Away from Microsoft?

Peter Bright, Ars Technica:

Reuters is reporting that three of Microsoft’s 20 largest investors want company founder Bill Gates to step down as chairman of the board.

The investors claim that Gates as chairman blocks the adoption of new strategies, and similarly that he will tie the hands of whoever is chosen to replace Steve Ballmer as CEO. Gates’ role on the committee to find Ballmer’s replacement is cited as evidence for this.

Would a new CEO be handicapped by Bill’s influence? It’s hard to see him not having an impact on the company’s mentality as a whole, especially if he disagrees with the company direction. Maybe the timing is good for him to step away entirely.

On the topic of the new CEO; at this point signs are pointing to current Ford CEO Alan Mulally being considered for the top spot. Quite honestly though, I don’t see Alan Mulally as a good choice. What non-tech CEO has come in and thrived at a tech company? I can’t think of anyone. Alan’s tech record at Ford is also less than stellar.