Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) CEO and president Paul Otellini has announced his resignation after seven and a half years at the helm. He will step down as an officer and director at the company's annual stockholders' meeting in May, the company announced this morning.

At the age of 62, Otellini has worked for the chip maker since his early twenties, rising to the CEO office via a three-year stint as chief operating officer. That four-decade career won't end too abruptly, as Otellini pledged to serve as an advisor to the company going forward. Otellini was only the fifth CEO in the company's 45-year history.

Intel is searching both inside and outside the company for potential successors when Otellini signs off in May, eight years after he was named CEO. The changeover will take effect at Intel's annual shareholder meeting.

He's passing the baton at a time of great uncertainty in Intel's core markets. Tablets and smartphones are taking over many of the tasks that desktop and notebook PCs used to handle, and Intel does not have a strong presence in the emerging mobile market. Otellini's replacement will be expected to chart a new path through the changing market.

The board today also announced the promotion of three senior leaders to the position of executive vice president: Renee James, head of Intel’s software business; Brian Krzanich, chief operating officer and head of worldwide manufacturing; and Stacy Smith, chief financial officer and director of corporate strategy.


This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.