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AMD CEO Dirk Meyer resigns

CFO steps into breach

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Mere days after AMD's "Fusion era" began, the Dirk Meyer era ended. The company's president and CEO resigned Monday afternoon, effective immediately.

"Dirk became CEO during difficult times. He successfully stabilized AMD while simultaneously concluding strategic initiatives including the launch of Global Foundries, the successful settlement of our litigation with Intel and delivering Fusion APUs to the market, said AMD board chairman Bruce Claflin in the traditional nicey-nice send-off statement.

Those complimentary comments completed, however, Claflin continued in a more-direct manner: "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."

The first step in that leadership change is CFO Thomas Seifert immediately stepping into Meyer's shoes as interim CEO while a search committee led by Claflin trolls for a new CEO to lead the struggling company. While that worthy is being identified, Claflin will upgrade his title to executive chairman.

In addition to taking the reins as interim CEO, Seifert will continue his CFO duties while Claflin "assumes additional oversight responsibilities." Seifert, AMD reports, "has asked not to be considered for the permanent CEO position."

To calm investors, AMD also made public some preliminary results for its fourth quarter of 2010: revenue of approximately $1.65bn, an increase of two per cent when compared with its third quarter results.

Those figures come as no surprise. During a conference call with reporters and analysts when those third-quarter figures were announced, Seifert said "For the fourth quarter of 2010 we expect revenue to be approximately flat as compared to the third quarter."

And so they were.

Wall Street reacted negatively to the news – but only slightly: during Monday's trading AMD's stock rose by a bit over 4 per cent, and during after-hours trading immediately following the announcement, the stock dropped approximately the same amount. ®

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