Microsoft CEO candidate Stephen Elop reportedly considering dropping Bing and selling Xbox business

By on November 8, 2013, 12:30 PM
microsoft, android, xbox, ios, office, bing, ceo, microsoft ceo, ford, stephen elop, gaming console, alan mulally

As we all know, Microsoft is on the hunt for a new CEO to replace Steve Ballmer before his retirement comes into effect within the next 10 months. Several names have been floating around as a replacement, two of which being Ford CEO Alan Mulally and former Nokia head, Stephen Elop. While not many details have surfaced regarding Mulally, other than that he has no intention of leaving Ford, recent reports are showing that Elop already has some major plans to shake up the company if he does indeed take on the role.

Likely a part of the interview process at Microsoft, Elop is beginning to outline an overall strategy for the company with a strong interest in pushing Office on mobile platforms in a much deeper way. He is also looking at cutting some of the fat at Microsoft, including search and Xbox, two businesses he feels are distracting for the company.

Although Office is already available on Android and iOS, Elop's potential plan would see a much more complete version of the apps on mobile in order to maximize sales of the software, as opposed to using it to push Windows hardware sales.

Elop would reportedly considering ditching Microsoft's Bing search engine as well as selling off its Xbox business, something investors have suggested over the years. In fact, Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen is in agreement with the Elop strategy, Allen's asset manager, Paul Ghaffari, said that "there are some parts of that operation they should probably spin out, get rid of, to focus on the enterprise and focus on the cloud." Investment analysts say that Microsoft's financial earnings could be bolstered as much as 40% by 2015 with this strategy.

However, it seems highly unlikely that Microsoft would take this road, especially with regards to Bing and Xbox. The new console is just around the corner now, and we are seeing the company integrate Bing more and more throughout its product lines. Bing is implemented directly in Windows 8.1 and powers a number of features available with the Xbox One and its apps.

Microsoft is said to be choosing a Ballmer successor as early as the end of the year, so it won't be long before we see if any of this comes to fruition.

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