AMD CEO Dirk Meyer resigns, company seeks new leader

By on January 10, 2011, 5:11 PM
Well, we didn't see this one coming. AMD has just announced that (now former) CEO Dirk Meyer has resigned from the company. There's no official reason behind Meyer's departure, except that he reached a "mutual agreement" with the company's board. A CEO Search Committee has been formed to find a replacement for Meyer and senior vice president Thomas Seifert has agreed to steer the ship until a permanent CEO is appointed.

"Dirk became CEO during difficult times. He successfully stabilized AMD while simultaneously concluding strategic initiatives including the launch of GlobalFoundries, the successful settlement of our litigation with Intel and delivering Fusion APUs to the market," said Bruce Claflin, Chairman of AMD's Board of Directors and head of the CEO Search Committee. Despite Meyer's contributions to the company, the board felt it was time for a change.


"However, the Board believes we have the opportunity to create increased shareholder value over time. This will require the company to have significant growth, establish market leadership and generate superior financial returns. We believe a change in leadership at this time will accelerate the company's ability to accomplish these objectives." It's unclear whether Meyer has another opportunity lined up or if AMD has any replacements in mind.




User Comments: 32

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Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

Interesting, does he know something that we don't know? (obviously)

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

I wonder if he was Bulldozed out.

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

red1776 said:

I wonder if he was Bulldozed out.

No, he probably bought a Sandy Bridge Processor for his home computer and said "F' Bulldozer"

Staff
Matthew Matthew, TechSpot Staff, said:

Clever, red.

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

They have hung their hat on the overdue,long awaited, and what might be seen as a trouble laden development of AMD's new architecture with new processes (32nm, and high K metal gate) Right about now is when they would realize the full potential of the 'Bulldozer'. I wonder if he is leaving because the numbers are not so good.

princeton princeton said:

We're going downhill! JUMP SHIP!

$50 says he knows bulldozer won't be able to compete with sandy bridge and is predicting AMDs downfall in the cpu market.

Also is it me or does that picture make him look like a drunk. His whole expression is sort of like he's in his own little world.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

I wonder if he was Bulldozed out.

+1

Insider trading ? ( Hector Ruiz redux)

Difference of opinion ?(Company direction, pricing, future product lines etc.)

Scandal ? ( Dirk does a Favre...hopefully with better taste in footwear...or maybe no footwear if he's consulted Rex Ryan!)

or....

"I'd like you to meet Intel's/Nvidia's new CEO !"

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

Insider trading ? ( Hector Ruiz redux)

Difference of opinion ?(Company direction, pricing, future product lines etc.)

Scandal ? ( Dirk does a Favre...hopefully with better taste in footwear...or maybe no footwear if he's consulted Rex Ryan!)

or....

"I'd like you to meet Intel's/Nvidia's new CEO !"

you forgot the most likely of them all Chef:

"to spend more time with the family"

Guest said:

this is very worrisome...

I hope this doesn't have anything to do with 'Bulldozer' performance. Because if it does, Intel will reign supreme/unchallenged for a very long time. That is very bad for the consumer

:(

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Princeton said:

Also is it me or does that picture make him look like a drunk. His whole expression is sort of like he's in his own little world.

First thing I thought too.

"You shee thish? You shee thish? Thish ish a buuuuuuuldooooooooozer. (makes noises of things crashing). I shaid call it Viper, but nooooooooo, they lishened to Boudreaux in marketing. (looks off stage) Hey baby, you ever **** a CEO?"

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

this is very worrisome...

I hope this doesn't have anything to do with 'Bulldozer' performance. Because if it does, Intel will reign supreme/unchallenged for a very long time. That is very bad for the consumer

Unlikely.

[link]
Sounds like a difference in opinion at board level.

From this and seeing how AMD conduct business, I'd say that it's what you get when you have a CEO who is an engineer. Relying on having good products selling themselves is anarchonistic in this day and age. From the stone-age websites which seem designed to confuse and provide relief for insomnia, a blatant "follow-the-leader" PR plan, and a marketing team that makes a lame duck look like an F-35 by comparison, AMD seem hellbent on putting 98% of their effort into making a product, 1% supporting it and 1% trying to promote and instill brand awareness that is crucial to the products uptake.

you forgot the most likely of them all Chef:

"to spend more time with the family"

Ha, that's what they all say!

If that was the reason then pretty poor form to spring the decision on AMD and leave them hanging for a replacement CEO

(???? This for any literal thinkers)

xipo87 said:

"...One of our sources, a former executive within the company was less than kind in his texts: "Dirk touched everything into Gold at DEC. In AMD, everything after K7 turned into Sh*t." When asked to elaborate, we were told that "Dirk and Hector run the company to the ground by selling the family jewlery. Dirk did not believe in Cellphone business and gave everything to BroadCom and Qualcomm. We lost Nokia, Motorola, Sony Ericsson and look who is now taking all the deals. Graphzilla." [Graphzilla was the nickname for nVidia on my previous publication, The INQ].

To elaborate, "conservative current" in AMD is currently rooted in Texas and is inside the CPU side of business. "Progressives" or "Canucks" stand for ex-ATI people who started their unstoppable climb inside the corporate stable and took over many of the executive roles and started to turn AMD into an aggressive company as it once were [during the Jerry Sanders reign]...."

source: brightsideofnews.com

xipo87 said:

"...Remember, Dirk Meyer?s three deadly sins were:

1) Failure to Execute: K8/Hammer/AMD64 was 18 months late, Barcelona was deliberately delayed by 9 months, original Bulldozer was scrapped and is running 22 months late

* I personally think this is not true; Dirk Meyer was AMD's CEO from July 18, 2008 until January 10, 2011; he could not be responsible for K8 nor Barcelona, however Bulldozer...

2) Giving the netbook market to Intel [AMD created the first netbook as a part of OLPC project] and long delays of Barcelona and Bulldozer architectures.

3) Completely missing the perspective on handheld space - selling Imageon to Qualcomm, Xilleon to BroadCom

Now, when it comes to Deadly Sin #3 - selling Imageon to Qualcomm didn't just cause AMD to lose Nokia and Motorola as customers. Both companies were Spansion customers as well [NOR Flash] but that's beside the point. The key issue, according to our sources at the time was that Nokia was fighting Qualcomm in courts over patents and their silicon supplier sold the key business unit [for Nokia] to the side which they were battling in court. This also caused that Nokia lost ground on the OpenGL ES development by 14 months - an estimate given to us by a Nokia executive..."

source: brightsideofnews.com

Lokalaskurar Lokalaskurar said:

Maybe Mr. Meyer is just handing over the show to someone energetic and creative? That would just be the thing AMD needs in these times!

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

They need to get their act together over there. They make great CPU and GPU but all these issues behind the seems.

Guest said:

Normally CEO would resign after a product launch ,successful or not, and not before an anticipated new product game-changing launch. lol.

So AMD fanboys better save money. add $30 and buy a bridge not a bulldozer. lololololol. Just like I said before, amd should stop releasing new phenoms based on an old architecture. There are many phenoms now eating the dust in warehouses. Only system builders who needs max profit whould build an amd and advertising it as a 4 cores pair it with 4gb mem and sell it to non-geeky buyers..

Invest in R&D AMD!

lolololololol.

Guest said:

@ Gwalio247 - LOL, can picture him as a drunk Randy Marsh from southpark doing that.

mosu said:

I think they caught him working for Intel...sin no1.If you look closer you'll see the footprint on his back. It's never about engineers or lack of money for development...

Guest said:

Intel fan boys on this site should really get a life.

Guest said:

ATI Trolls should really stop hiding behind the Guest account.

princeton princeton said:

Guest said:

ATI Trolls should really stop hiding behind the Guest account.

This. Ever since the i5-760 buying AMD was a stupid decision. Face the facts AMD lovers. Intel is a far superior company and sandy bridge further shows that.

Guest said:

Princeton is the man!

LOL at all AMD fans. Now you know why AMD is perceived by many as a budget brand. That is because it can't compete directly to Intel. Ask every scientist and top engineers, they will always prefer Intel and Nvidia as their processor and video card.

Nvidia is gaining again the momentum, and Intel delivering AMD a KO again in an efficient and excellent Sandy Bridge. I hope AMD can still survive this 2011.

Long live the hype! Bulldozer and fusion won't make it.

Benny26 Benny26, TechSpot Paladin, said:

It's sad for AMD..I hope they get sorted soon.

More variety and consumer choice is never a bad thing.

Jurassic4096 said:

The Wall Street Journal reports Dirk was forced out. Its a short read, but its there.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

He can dry his tears with the wads of cash he gets for his shares when ATIC/Mubadala buys up the percentage of AMD ( acronym will then stand for Abu Dhabi Mubadala Devices) they don't already control.

Guest said:

Probably nothing to it but I am hearing through the grape vine that Bulldozer is running late (hence Meyer's "resigning") and will slip to late Q3. There could be more to this story than meets the eye.

"Ever since the i5-760 buying AMD was a stupid decision. Face the facts AMD lovers. Intel is a far superior company and sandy bridge further shows that."

Well duh princeton. Thanks for stating the obvious. Whats your next great revelation? The Pope is a Catholic? You're an Intel fanboy?

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

Wow I'm a bit sick to my stomach here. I guess there aren't any adults anywhere on the internet? Now there's "Intel fanboys" bashing so called "AMD fanboys." Jesus Christ people, it's just processors. Get the one you feel is best for your budget. Not everybody can afford an i7 or even an i5.

As much as I admire the performance of Intel Processors compared to AMDs, I myself have a 965BE that is more than enough for what I want it to do. It plays all my games in max settings as well as being fast enough not to bottleneck my GTX 580.

Would I buy an intel CPU instead? Yes probably if I had more money, but the fact is that I didn't. And spending $160 for my 965BE is a good decision for my budget.

You geeks need to get out and see the real world once in awhile, nobody cares about these kind of things. As consumers, we should be happy if two companies are competing which means that we'll get lower prices for higher quality products. If AMD ceases to exist and Intel runs rampant, god knows how much an entry level CPU from them will cost.

In short, Grow up folks. You're not PS3/360 fanboys.

DokkRokken said:

Now you're just being sarcastic.

Guest said:

@sarcasm,

Sell your crappy, high heat output and power hungry 965BE now! Jump the ship before its too late and while your 965be has value. a rough road is ahead of you if you didn't consider.my suggestion ....sarcasm.....

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

Guest said:

@sarcasm,

Sell your crappy, high heat output and power hungry 965BE now! Jump the ship before its too late and while your 965be has value. a rough road is ahead of you if you didn't consider.my suggestion ....sarcasm.....

Sorry, I don't take advice from a 12 year old hiding behind a guest account on the internet. Go waggle your e-peen elsewhere.

Guest said:

go to glassdoor

for many years, since AMD bought ATI (for like $5 BILLION AMD didn't have but borrowed),

there has been tension with senior management.

re: problem with AMD is its run by an engineer.

What do you think CEOs of Intel, Gordon Moore and Andy Grove were?

did they major in advertising? They were both engineers, with extensive backgrounds in semi-conductor companies.. ie Fairchild

Of the three founders, Robert Noyce, was least engineerish... kinda more of a physisist or mathematician.

What about other big companies. Microsoft's Gates was a hardcore programmer and engineer. Google's Page and Brin are computer scientists.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

re: problem with AMD is its run by an engineer.

What do you think CEOs of Intel, Gordon Moore and Andy Grove were?

did they major in advertising? They were both engineers, with extensive backgrounds in semi-conductor companies.. ie Fairchild

The difference being - as was also stated- is that AMD channel virtually all resources into pushing hardware out the door-it has an engineering mentality from top to bottom. Extrapolating from your argument AMD would have something approaching Intel's brand awareness in the marketplace. Nvidia is also run by an engineer- the difference between Paul Otellini/Jen Hsun Huang and AMD's Dirk Meyer/Hector Ruiz et al. is that the former know the value of brand awareness and how to instill brand allegiance via product support, viral marketing and every other trick in the PR handbook.

Cases in point;

1. Check this and other forums for comments following every CPU release. How often does the phrase -or variations of it- "...but I'll wait to upgrade until I see what Bulldozer brings". All the slide decks and Analyst/consumer show bombast about how the CPU/architecture is the next greatest thing* has created an enviroment where I doubt too many people are rushing out to buy the present generation of AMD CPU's - particularly the upper tier Phenom II X4/X6

2. Why does Nvidia enjoy 90% of the professional graphics market? Are Quadro graphics cards 90% better than their AMD FirePro opposites?

Nvidia has that 90% because they actively market the brand- that means they partner with every software developer they can find, they keep the drivers and software current and anticipate (or create) demand for new feature sets. AMD on the other hand distribute an OpenCL SDK (AMD Stream) -whose promised feature set often slips from release to release- and relies almost entirely on independant developers to design/implement software applications. Basically DIY pro graphics.

What Nvidia recognised and AMD are probably just realizing, is that Pro graphics carries a greater amount of inertia than does the consumer space. Once a customer has the ecosystem of one manufacturer in place it makes getting that customer to make a switch a monumental task. In AMD's case it couldn't/wouldn't provide funds for channeling into the pro market hence the DIY approach with OpenCL. Unfortunately for AMD, Nvidia are now in the position where CUDA is very well established with the added bonus that their propriety software ports easily to OpenCL- hardly surprising since Nvidia (along with ATI) were two of the founder members for the Khronus OpenCL initiative

At great portion of this simply comes down to available resources. AMD made the decision to look to their future and acquired ATI - the buyout and the resultant product lines that will ensue should stand the company in good stead, it has however left them fighting a two front war with minimal financial resources, so to a degree, even if AMD wanted to invest more heavily in marketing and software development/support they probably would end up spread to thin.

* Designed to stall Intel sales, unfortunately it also marginalizes AMD's own hardware stack in the process. Note how Intel's marketing makes a clear distinction between mainstream (Lynnfield/Sandy Bridge) and enthusiast (Bloomfield/Gulftown) and it's reservation of "Extreme Edition" badging for only the top SKU's in the enthusiast product line so as not to dilute the "brand". You can bet the farm that a Core i7 2xxx CPU destined for LGA1155 P67/Z68 will not wear the "Extreme" nameplate.

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