The End of an Era at Motorola

in General Discussion edited January 2014
I haven't read the article yet, because it's in the Wall Street Journal and I don't have a subscription, but the headline quoted on MacSurfer says it all:

Motorola's Galvin to step down as Chairman and CEO.

[update: Linkage courtesy of MacMinute. It appears that the catalyst was a "difference of opinion" between Galvin and the governing board over how much progress Mot had made. The COO is the leading contender to replace him.]

Motorola has been a family-owned company from day one. Chris Galvin's retirement means that for the first time in its history it won't be run by the Galvin family. And Chris has nobody but himself to blame for that.

I know there's been immense shareholder pressure for him to either turn the company around or get out of the way. If he's getting out of the way, it probably means the shareholders aren't happy (no, really!) and they're calling for new leadership.

This is a sobering moment in the company's history. It'll be interesting to see who takes the place of the last Galvin, and to see how well he does at the helm.


  • Reply 1 of 11
    Jobs should do it
  • Reply 2 of 11
    leonisleonis Posts: 3,427member
    Moto needs new blood.

    But I am not holding my breath

    Apple will only look at it as the second choice at least in the next 5 years
  • Reply 3 of 11
    matsumatsu Posts: 6,558member
    I've had some pretty good first hand accounts about the general implosions of Moto's satellite project. If this situation was mirrored throught the company's more established business then the current state of their CPU development is no big surprise at all.
  • Reply 4 of 11
    leonisleonis Posts: 3,427member
    Even their cell phones "suck" these days
  • Reply 5 of 11
    bartobarto Posts: 2,246member
    Wow. Well, I guess he had his chance.
  • Reply 6 of 11
    screedscreed Posts: 1,077member
    Curious timing just after the announcement with Microsoft and their phones.

  • Reply 7 of 11
    Mike Z sucks. He's made negligible progress with the cell phone division and is a Galvin lackey. Let's hope the board brings in someone from the outside who is willing to shake up the Old Boys' Club.
  • Reply 8 of 11
    andersanders Posts: 6,523member
    Motharoller who?
  • Reply 9 of 11
    709709 Posts: 2,016member
    This month in Fast Company, the cover story is 'CEOs Who Should Lose Their Jobs'. Inside they list 'The 5 CEOs Who Won't Let Go' and Galvin is right there amongst Eisner (Disney), Karmanos (Compuware), Waltrip (Service Corp.) and Ryan (AON).

    Some of the stats in the last 5 years are pretty sobering:

    Total shareholder return: -41.6%

    Peer return: -34.1%

    S&P 500 Index return: -7.8%

    6.7 billion in losses

  • Reply 10 of 11
    amorphamorph Posts: 7,112member

    NYTimes article
    contributed by 1337_5L4Xx0R elsethread confirms my suspicions.

    I've followed their turnaround strategy, and some of it makes sense (curing "Performa syndrome" in their product lines, for example), and some of it falls under what Fred Anderson calls "mortgaging the future" (massive layoffs and slash-and-burn budget cutting). The latter is always dangerous at a technology company that has to keep up with design and R&D (heck, it's dangerous anywhere).

    For me, the worst omen is actually the partnership with Microsoft. I work in an old DEC shop, and we saw what happened when they tried turning around by partnering with MS (and, for the record, HPaq is not a suitable replacement - and gee, look, they're in bed with MS as well!). MS is just too ruthlessly self-interested, too paranoid and too damn powerful to be a reliable partner, especially if you're on the ropes.

    It'll be interesting to see how it pans out. I note that Mot's share of the cell phone market ticked up from 13% to 17% this year, and Crolles has the potential to make Mot SPS competitive again, so there are definitely some bright spots among the clouds. But there are also a lot of clouds.
  • Reply 11 of 11
    Mototola stock used to be like $16 a share. Then it dropped to about $8 or $9! It's now at about $11, but shareholders are probably quite disappointed (all 13 million of them.)
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