President Obama will be hosting his first Google+ hangout tonight at 5:30 p.m. Eastern. In the discussion, the president will be answering questions that were submitted over the past few weeks through YouTube. Google maintains that the White House has had no role in which questions will be selected. Google’s team will instead choose the top-rated questions among those submitted, ensuring there will be several different issues discussed. The event will take place in the Roosevelt Room of the White House and is scheduled to last 45 minutes. The hangout will also be streamed on the White House’s web site, and reporters and press cameras not permitted inside during the event. Obama has previously hosted town hall meetings on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, all of which received harsh criticism and claims that the President ignored subjects that drew the most questions. More →
After months of investors unrest, Research In Motion on Sunday announced that Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis were stepping down from their roles as co-CEO and co-Chairmen. Barbara Stymiest was named RIM’s new chairperson of the board, in line with rumors, and former Ericsson executive Thorsten Heins was named president and CEO. Heins and Stymiest hosted a conference call Monday morning, with Heins leading the show, and the company took its first steps in a long climb toward regaining shareholder confidence and customer confidence. Read on for more. More →
Kazuo Hirai will take over as the president of Sony in the next few months, Nikkei reported on Friday. Howard Stringer, who previously had served as the president, chairman and CEO of the company will remain on board as chief executive officer. Sony is expected to be a big presence at the Consumer Electronics Show this year and could unveil a “different kind of TV set” early next week. Sony also recently announced that it will purchase Ericsson’s stake in its Sony Ericsson joint venture for $1.47 billion. More →
ARM president Tudor Brown announced on Thursday that he will not seek re-election during a May 3rd shareholder meeting. ARM does not currently have any plans in place to replace Brown. “[Brown] played an important role in the creation and successful development of ARM over the past 21 years and has made an immense contribution in a wide range of positions,” ARM chairman Doug Dunn said. According to The Wall Street Journal, ARM has shipped more than 15 billion chips “based on ARM-processor technology” since the company was founded in 1990. “[I am] very proud to have been so closely involved in building ARM to be the highly successful and respected company that it is today,” Brown, who helped co-found the company with 11 other founders, said in a statement. “[The company is in a] very strong position and I look forward to watching it grow further in the future.”
AMD hired former Lenovo president and chief operating officer Rory Read as its president and chief executive officer on Thursday. Read will replace interim leader Tom Seifert, the company’s chief financial officer, and former CEO Dirk Meyer. Meyer resigned from the chip maker in January after the company’s board decided that AMD could be more profitable, and no doubt more competitive against Intel, with a new head. “I’m very pleased to be joining AMD at this important time in its history,” Read said in a statement. “I’m excited to be joining AMD’s employees as we write the next chapter not just for the company, but for the industry and consumers around the world.” Read worked at IBM for 23 years before moving to Lenovo. The move is effective immediately. Read on for the full press release. More →
Apple’s head of retail is leaving the company to become President of JC Penney, Bloomberg said in a wire report. Prior to the move, Ron Johnson lead Apple’s retail strategy and was responsible for its overall performance according to his executive bio on the Apple website. Apple’s retail business reeled in $3.19 billion in revenue last quarter, and it the company is widely heralded for its leadership in the space. Shares of JC Penney stock jumped more than 14% on the news.
In conjunction with yesterday’s AT&T and T-Mobile merger announcement, T-Mobile USA’s President and CEO — Philipp Humm — sent an email to company employees explaining the move. Referring to it as “the best possible solution for our business and for our customers,” Humm assured his workforce that AT&T was committed to “keeping talented people through the transition.” The letter reiterates statements made in the company’s official press release, and acknowledges that the news may be both “unexpected” and “unsettling.” The full-text of the letter is awaiting your scrutiny after the break. More →
Today, via a press release, T-Mobile USA announced the completion of its “senior leadership transition” and has introduce Philipp Humm as president and chief executive officer. Mr. Humm will replace current CEO Robert Dotson; who will become T-Mobile’s vice chairman of the board of directors. “This move allows the new team to prepare a strong foundation for 2011 and forward,” said René Obermann, CEO of Deutsche Telekolm; T-Mobile’s parent company. T-Mo USA also announced that CTO Cole Brodman will assume the role of chief marketing officer and former chief network officer, Neville Ray, will assume the company’s CTO role. Hit the jump for the full press release. More →
Well, we might as well close the loop on this one. Last month, we told you how former HP CEO Mark Hurd was ousted by HP, complimented by Larry Ellison, and then hired by Oracle. We also told you how the Oracle hiring prompted a lawsuit from Mr. Hurd’s former employer. Now, the New York Times is reporting that the two sides have reached an agreement on the embattled executive’s future. In exchange for dropping the lawsuit, Hurd will forfeit nearly half of the $28 million compensation package he was given by HP. The former HP chief, and now Oracle President, will give up 330,177 shares of performance-based restricted stock and 15,853 shares of time-base restricted stock (that’s about $13.34 million using today’s stock price). Oracle and HP, who do quite a bit of business together, did their best to reassure stock holders that the two companies are on the mend. “Oracle and HP will continue to build and expand a partnership that has already lasted for over 25 years,” said Oracle CEO Larry Ellison. “HP and Oracle have been important partners for more than 20 years and are committed to working together to provide exceptional products and service to our customers,” said Cathie Lesjak, the CFO and interim CEO of HP. So ends this chapter of the Mark Hurd Chronicles. More →
Talk about landing on your feet. HP’s former CEO, Mark Hurd, was forced to resign after allegations of personal misconduct were made public by the company’s board. Hurd was sent packing with a mere $28 million in cash and stock for his efforts; efforts that lasted just over five years at HP. The forced resignation of Hurd was denounced as “cowardly” by Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, and now it looks like Ellison is putting his money where his mouth is. The AP is reporting that Hurd has been named co-president of Mr. Ellison’s company, Oracle. “Mark did a brilliant job at HP and I expect he’ll do even better at Oracle. There is no executive in the IT world with more relevant experience than Mark,” said Ellison. “Oracle’s future is engineering complete and integrated hardware and software systems for the enterprise.” Oracle is the top database reseller in the world and, with Hurd’s expertise, is looking to expand its business into different areas. More →
Well, it looks like board meetings over at Intel are going to be pretty awkward for a while. Following the Wall Street Journal’s scoop earlier today, Yahoo has officially announced that Carol Bartz has joined the company as CEO. In the same breath, Yahoo also revealed that current President Sue Decker has informed the company she will be resigning from her role after a transitional period. Decker, a candidate who had been considered for the open CEO spot as well, has been with Yahoo in a variety of capacities for the past 8-1/2 years. Decker will remain on as Bartz settles into her position, after which she will apparently head off to greener pastures – which shouldn’t be overly difficult at this point. As for Bartz, Yahoo’s press release included her first official statement as CEO:
Yahoo! is a powerful global brand with a great collection of assets, strong technology, and enormously talented employees. The Company has accomplished a great deal in its relatively short history and I look forward to working together to take it to the next level. There is no denying that Yahoo! has faced enormous challenges over the last year, but I believe there is now an extraordinary opportunity to create value for our shareholders and new possibilities for our customers, partners and employees. We will seize that opportunity.
Former CEO Jerry Yang will return to his previous role as Chief Yahoo.
After the whole controversy over the usage of the White Space spectrum had been given the thumbs up by the FCC, we thought that free, nationwide wireless Internet access was a given. Not so fast says the White House. The FCC was going to vote as early as next week on a plan to auction 25 megahertz of spectrum in the 2155MHz to 2180MHz band. According to the FCC’s plan, those who purchase a license to use this spectrum would be required to offer free wireless broadband service. The White House disagreed with the requirement that licensees had to offer free service and voiced its objection in a letter written by Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez saying:
“The administration believes that the (airwaves) should be auctioned without price or product mandate. The history of FCC spectrum auctions has shown that the potential for problems increases in instances where licensing is overly prescriptive or designed around unproven business models.”
The FCC is reportedly reviewing the letter and has publicly stated that, though it does agree that “market forces should drive competition”, it also believes “providing free basic broadband to consumers is a good thing.” Perhaps the White House is considering how well the free market system is working in every other industry these days when making this assessment…