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Intel's Massive Reorg, Exec Shakeup: Getting Ready For Mobility, Communications

Intel President Renee James and several other executives will step down or retire soon as part of a huge reorganization as the company shifts its focus away from PCs.

photo
Brian Krzanich

Intel is making sweeping changes to its executive team and its organization as the company looks to capitalize on a greater IT industry focus on mobility and communications.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based chip developer this week said Intel President Renee James, a 28-year company veteran, will step down from her post by year-end to pursue a role as CEO at another company.

James is departing Intel on friendly terms. In a letter released Wednesday to Intel employees, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich wrote that James became company president to develop and drive its strategy.

[Related: Intel Sharpening The Blade For Job Cuts After Tough Quarter]

"Renee’s work as President has helped to prepare Intel for even greater success in the future. She has helped me move Intel forward with a clear strategy, new external talent and an intensive focus on diversity and leadership. Her transition work in the coming months will include transferring many key relationships and helping to reallocate her functions and initiatives," Krzanich wrote.

Another high-level executive leaving Intel is Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital, who plans to retire in January after a 35-year career with Intel. His responsibilities will be merged with those of Wendell Brooks, Intel's president of mergers and acquisitions.

Organizationally, Intel is merging its tablet and long-term agreement phone teams with its PC Client Group as part of a new organization, the Client Computing Group, Krzanich wrote. That group will be managed by Kirk Skaugen, currently the senior vice president and general manager for the PC Client Group.

Intel is also integrating its China Platform Engineering Group and its wireless platform R&D under a new Intel Communication & Devices Group under General Manager Aicha Evans in order to better take advantage of its new SoFIA (Smart or Feature phone with Intel Architecture), Intel's first fully integrated LTE modem-based SoC for phones, the company said.

"Together these changes enabled us to present a unified voice to our client customers, get products to market faster, and bring better IP reuse and integration across our client platforms," Krzanich wrote.

Also new is the New Technology Group, which brings together Intel Labs, its Perceptual Computing Group, its new business initiatives organization, and its New Devices Group under the direction of Josh Walden, senior vice president and general manager of the New Technology Group.

The Intel Security group, formerly known as McAfee, which Intel acquired in 2010, on July 1 was integrated as a business unit into Intel operations, a move Krzanich wrote would enable Intel Security "to advance the state of security across the industry." The Intel Security business unit's products will continue to carry the McAfee name.


As a result of the reorganizations, Intel will be saying goodbye to a number of executives. This includes Mike Bell, an Intel vice president who led Intel's Mobile & Communications Group and the New Devices Group, who will retire later this year, Krzanich wrote. It also includes Hermann Eul, general manager and corporate vice president, whose contract with Intel expires in 2016.

"I know management changes can be distracting, but it is critical that we remain focused on what we do best: delivering amazing products and experiences to our customers. I firmly believe that it is this collective team -- Intel employees around the world -- that makes our mission a reality," Krzanich wrote.

Intel's big exec changes and reorganization come as Intel and other manufacturers like it have to adjust to a new paradigm being caused by cloud and mobility, said Todd Swank, senior director of product marketing at Equus Computer Systems, a Minneapolis-based custom system builder.

Intel is doing what it needs to do to be ready for the shift, Swank told CRN. "The industry is shifting from the client architecture model to the cloud," he said.

PUBLISHED JULY 2, 2015

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