Microsoft chairman and co-founder Bill Gates had an emotional moment yesterday while speaking about the search for a new CEO to lead the software corporation.
Delivering a speech at the company’s annual shareholders meeting in Bellevue, Wash., Gates held back tears while discussing a replacement for Steve Ballmer.
“We’ve got a commitment to make sure that the next CEO is the right person for the right time for the company we both love. And, we share a commitment that Microsoft will succeed as a company that makes the world a better place," he said.
In August, Ballmer announced he would be retiring from the software giant. Ballmer, 57, said in a statement at the time: "My original thoughts on timing would have had my retirement happen in the middle of our company’s transformation to a devices and services company. We need a CEO who will be here longer term for this new direction." Reports suggest Ballmer's exit was earlier than planned.
Ballmer joined the company in 1980, and would become Microsoft’s second CEO in 2000 after taking over for Bill Gates. The two are the only men to lead Microsoft as chief executive in the company’s 38-year history.