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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Even Intel’s biggest critics are now on board with its new CEO

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Intel has been facing some hurdles these past few years. Not only has Nvidia overtaken the blue team as the most valuable US chip maker, Intel’s 10nm node is also five years behind schedule. These, among other issues, have been a cause for concern for investors across the globe. Billionaire investor Dan Loeb of Third Point was one of those to air his apprehensions quite publicly, but he now appears to have revised his stance.

According to Barron’s, Loeb had previously expressed his malcontent toward Intel’s manufacturing, calling the loss of talent in engineering over the years a “brain drain” for the company.

Having a major stake in Intel stocks, he is reported to have advised Intel to “explore strategic alternatives,” by way of hiring an investment advisor. This way the company could establish whether it was necessary to continue on as an integrated device manufacturer, as well as whether it should sell off some of its recent “failed acquisitions,” in order to maximize its value. Third Point had even threatened to nominate directors to Intel’s board itself if Loeb’s concerns were not addressed.

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Not long after Loeb’s concerns were made public, Intel decided to bring back Pat Gelsinger making him the new CEO. That same day, stocks increased by 12% as news of his appointment spread, and have upped 18% this year on the whole. 

Gelsinger was Intel’s former CTO and all-round good guy, boasting 30 years service with the company before leaving to work for EMC (a data-storage company) in 2009.

It’s not surprising that Loeb has now changed his tune, noting that “It is hard to think of a better person to motivate and inspire the best of Intel’s thousands of brilliant employees who will help build the company’s future.” 

Seems Loeb has recognised what we already knew: Gelsinger is set to kick Intel back into shape

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