New Clippers owner and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has officially stepped down from the Redmond company’s board, effective immediately. In a public exchange of letters on Microsoft’s site, Ballmer personally breaks the news to Satya Nadella, who took over CEO duties after Ballmer retired earlier this year. Seems his duties as new Clippers owner will take up too much of his time, which is why he’s stepping away for good.
In familiar Ballmer style, he wears his heart on his sleeve in the almost 600-word letter, contemplating his time at Microsoft while praising the company’s accomplishments. Ballmer was known throughout the industry as one of the more eccentric CEOs, and could regularly be found shouting and skipping around during important Microsoft keynotes.
At a recent Clippers fan festival, Ballmer actually carried on like the familiar maniac we all know and love; it’s great to see nothing has changed since his departure. Sports ownership suits him well.
On Microsoft, Ballmer said the company has the best mix of “software skills, clouds skills, and hardware skills,” adding that he has great confidence in the company’s “mobile-first, cloud-first” approach. And although he’s no longer involved, Ballmer says he’ll still “bleed Microsoft,” and continue to support the company until eternity.
I love reading about what is going on at the company. I love trying new products and sending feedback. I love reading about what is going on at the company. Count on me to keep ideas and inputs flowing. The company will move to higher heights. I will be proud, and I will benefit through my share ownership. I promise to support and encourage boldness by management in my role as a shareholder in any way I can.
Nadella’s response was much more concise. “I am sure that you will bring the same boldness, passion and impact to your new endeavors that you brought to Microsoft,” Nadella said.
That we can be sure of. I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say I can’t wait to see Ballmer on the sidelines of future Clippers games, shouting at the refs and getting fans pumped like only he knows how.