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Gelsinger confirms leap to EMC

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The reports are confirmed: Pat Gelsinger is really joining EMC.

He becomes the President and Chief Operating Officer for EMC Information Infrastructure Products, the big storage cash-generator inside EMC. With his appointment he will join EMC's inner executive circle, the Executive Office of the Chairman, along with newly-promoted Howard Elias and David Goulden, EMC's CFO.

Joe Tucci, EMC's chairman, president and CEO, said: "These are three world-class leaders at the top of their game."

Bill Teuber, EMC's Vice Chairman, is also a member of the EOC.

Howard Elias is promoted to become President and Chief Operating Officer for EMC's Information Infrastructure and Cloud Services. Previously he was the president of EMC's Global Services and its Ionix IT management business. The latter goes to Gelsinger who also gets RSA Information Security and Content Management and Archiving. He's the axle in a pretty big wheel.

Since Elias gets to be a president and COO for the information infrastructure and cloud services (Decho which includes Mozy, Pi and Atmos) parts of EMC, it seems possible that Harel Kodesh, the current president for the Cloud Infrastructure Business, will do something else, presidents not generally reporting to presidents.

Supporting this idea, Kodesh, who came to EMC from Amdocs, currently reports to Joe Tucci, so a reporting line to Elias could/would be seen as a demotion.

The elevation of Elias, the services guy, alongside Gelsinger, the storage products guy, confirms that EMC is deadly serious about information and storage services.

Joe Tucci said, "Pat's three decades of technical and general management leadership experience will serve EMC's customers well as they build out and blend their information infrastructures to better compete, reduce costs, minimize risk, and create ever-new levels of value from their information."

That three decades of Intel experience - 30 years of the 48-year-old Gelsinger's working life - means he has never known another company, and will probably have a steeper than normal EMC culture learning curve as a result.

He was over the moon about his move to EMC: "Over the last three decades, Intel has provided me with extraordinary opportunities and the ultimate executive proving ground. For that I remain forever grateful. I'm also thrilled with the road ahead and prospect of helping lead a company of EMC's stature.

"The technology industry has undergone almost incomprehensible change over the last three decades since I entered it. The rate and pace of change and challenge is not abating in the slightest. EMC is extremely well positioned to play a pivotal role in the IT industry for decades to come."

Joe Tucci has told the board that he plans to remain as an active Chairman and CEO through 2012. It is generally thought that his successor now has three years to prove himself, and that three hats are in the ring: Elias, Gelsinger and Goulden.

To these three we should surely add VMware boss Paul Maritz, but he might need more experience of other parts of EMC. If his remit expands to include more EMC responsibilities then that could be a sign his hat is also in the CEO succession ring.

A different view would be that VMware is simply too important to be treated as just another part of EMC, and that Maritz is already at the top of his career. ®

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