Intel, it seems, didn’t have to look too hard to find its new CEO. Half a year after being named interim CEO, Bob Swan is taking the job full-time. Swan, the seventh CEO in Intel’s 50-year history, will also be joining the chipmaker’s board of directors.
Prior to this gig, Swan had been Intel’s CFO, since late-2016 after holding positions at eBay and Electronic Data Systems Corp. Swan stepped into the interim role as word emerged of then-CEO Brian Krzanich’s “past consensual relationship” with an employee.
“In my role as interim CEO, I’ve developed an even deeper understanding of Intel’s opportunities and challenges, our people and our customers,” Swan said in a release tied to the news. “When the board approached me to take on the role permanently, I jumped at the chance to lead this special company. 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.”
Todd Underwood, the company’s VP of Finance, will become the interim CFO as the chipmaker looks to permanently fill Swan’s previous role. As for why it took so long to name a permanent CEO with Swan around the whole time, the executive reportedly wasn’t always so enthusiastic about the position. Shortly after stepping in as interim chief exec, reports surfaced that he didn’t want the gig. He even reportedly went so far as to remove himself from consideration.
Heading up Intel will be a lofty task, as the company has struggled to adapt to a changing environment. It missed out on much of the mobile revolution, as companies like Qualcomm picked up the mantle. And last year, Samsung overtook Intel for the title of the world’s largest chipmaker. Intel has since begun bracing itself as a leading force in the push toward 5G, but a slowing smartphone market has had an impact on the company, along with the rest of the industry.