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Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to retire within 12 months

Posted By CAROLINE LEE, UPI.com   |   Aug. 23, 2013 at 9:55 AM   |   Comments

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Aug. 23 (UPI) -- On Friday, Microsoft announced that Steve Balmer will retire as the company's CEO within 12 months.

Ballmer, 57, followed Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates as CEO in 2000. He will stay on to help in the search for his successor, alongside a special committee of the board of directors, including Gates, chairman of the company.

"There is never a perfect time for this type of transition, but now is the right time," Ballmer said in a statement.

Shares of Microsoft jumped 7 percent in early trading after the announcement to $34.84 a share.

“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,” Ballmer said. “We need a C.E.O. who will be here longer term for this new direction.”

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