Report: Former Microsoft Exec Raikes Isn't Going To Be Next CEO


Jeff Raikes, the former Microsoft executive who's been CEO of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation since 2008, isn't coming back to take the CEO job at his old company.

That's according to Kara Swisher of AllThingsD who spoke with sources close to the Microsoft CEO search on Tuesday after Raikes announced he'll be leaving the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Raikes has a level of familiarity with Microsoft's businesses that makes him a compelling candidate to replace Ballmer, who is leaving within a year. During a 20-year career at Microsoft, he drove the company's Information Worker, productivity applications and unified communications efforts.

[Related: Report: Microsoft Investors Pushing Ford's Mulally, CSC's Lawrie As CEO Candidates]

However, Swisher's sources say Raikes plans to return to his home state of Nebraska to focus on his own philanthropic organization, the Seattle-based Raikes Foundation, which focuses on youth development, education and critical community projects and makes direct grants to nonprofit organizations.

Raikes, in an email posted on the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation website, said he'd always planned for his stint as CEO to be a five-year commitment. He said he'll stay on as CEO until his replacement is found.

"I have learned so much from Bill, Melinda, our grantees and partners, and all of you about catalytic philanthropy and specific issues like agriculture and education. I have also learned from -- and been deeply moved by -- the people I've met in the field, whether they're Ethiopian farmers trying to grow enough food to feed their children or a teacher in New Orleans helping students make a better future," Raikes said in the email.

Meanwhile, some of Microsoft's top investors want the special committee in charge of finding Ballmer's replacement to consider Ford CEO Alan Mulally and CSC CEO Mike Lawrie, Reuters reported Tuesday.

PUBLISHED SEPT. 10, 2013