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Intel CEO Brian Krzanich immediately steps down over relationship with employee

Brian Krzanich has resigned from his position as Intel CEO and board member, effective immediately after being caught violating non-fraternization policy. Despite the relationship being described as “consensual” the contractual clause prevents any managers from romantic involvement with their employees.

The investigation pertaining to Krzanich’s relationship was supposedly ongoing before the former-CEO stepped down. Intel explains in its press release that the board has accepted the resignation on the basis that “all employees will respect Intel’s values and adhere to the company’s code of conduct.”

Krzanich has a deep rooted history with Intel, starting as a process engineer in 1982 and working his way to CEO in 2013. During Krzanich’s time in charge, Intel has experienced a bit of a stagnation, particularly seeing its 10nm Cannon Lake chips delayed considerably and allowing AMD’s efforts with Ryzen to claw back some CPU market share.

The former-CEO also found himself embroiled in controversy when Spectre and Meltdown security flaws were made public. While Intel was not the only chipmaker affected by the issues, the company was decidedly slow in its attempts to patch the problems. Dust hadn’t even settled before it was revealed Krzanich had sold the maximum amount of shares he could prior to the flaws hitting headlines, prompting speculation that he was preparing for the expected fallout.

Image: Brian Krzanich from Intel Newsroom

Chief Financial Officer Robert Swan has been chosen to step up as the immediate interim CEO, while Intel conducts a search for a permanent replacement, “including both internal and external candidates.”

“The board believes strongly in Intel’s strategy and we are confident in Bob Swan’s ability to lead the company as we conduct a robust search for our next CEO. Bob has been instrumental to the development and execution of Intel’s strategy, and we know the company will continue to smoothly execute. We appreciate Brian’s many contributions to Intel,” said Intel Chairman Andy Bryant.

Prior to assuming Intel’s CFO role in 2016, Swan acted as CFO for eBay Inc for nine years, as well as CFO of Electronic Data Systems Corp and CEO of Webvan Group Inc sometime before that.

“Intel’s transformation to a data-centric company is well under way and our team is producing great products, excellent growth and outstanding financial results. I look forward to Intel continuing to win in the marketplace,” concludes Swan.

KitGuru Says: Perhaps a fresh face is what Intel truly needs after such a turbulent few years. If not new products, the company certainly needs to earn the faith of its fan base back. Do you think Bob Swan is the right person for the job?

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