Earlier this year Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced that he was stepping down. The company has since been searching for a replacement CEO, and several rumors have suggested that Ford president and CEO Alan Mulally was on the list. Likewise, Nokia’s Stephen Elop, once a Microsoft executive, has been rumored to be a consideration for the leadership role.
According to Reuters, both men are indeed on Microsoft’s “shortlist” of executives. The third is Tony Bates, who previously served as the CEO of Skype and currently works at Microsoft. Save for Mulally, there appears to be a clear desire to appoint a leader from within Microsoft, instead of searching outside the company. Microsoft originally considered as many as 40 people for the role, including Computer Sciences Corp CEO Mike Lawrie.
Ford has publicly stated that Mulally is focused on leading the car maker, and not on searching for a new role at another company. A final decision on Microsoft’s new CEO is still likely a few months out, Reuters said.