AMD Appoints Lisa Sue As New CEO – Rory Read Steps Down


AMD has announced today via a conference call that Rory Read will step down as AMD's CEO. And the company's COO Lisa Sue will be stepping up to the position of President and CEO effective immediately.

Rory Read left, Lisa Sue right

Lisa Sue is a semiconductor veteran, a well recognized and respected face at AMD. Ms Sue was put in the COO position four months ago. The COO position had not been filled prior to then and the resurrection of the position signaled to many analysts that AMD maybe grooming Ms Sue for the CEO position. A conclusion that was accurate as it turns out today.

AMD's Rory Read Steps Down After Three Years With The Company

Rory Read held many executive positions at IBM before he stepped up to lead Lenovo in rough times. Rory Read's efforts launched Lenovo from the position of a marginal player in the industry to the strong leadership position the company enjoys today.
Read joined AMD as chief executive officer back in 2011, in a very turbulent time for the company. Read led the charge on AMD's turn-around plan that focused on diversifying the company's portfolio outside the generally shrinking PC market. As CEO Read was very successful in doing so, deriving up to 40% of AMD's revenue from non-PC markets. A number that is expected to grow to 50% by the end of next year.

Lisa Sue's new leadership role does not signal a different strategy for the company. As CEO she will continue with Rory Read's three phase plan to turn AMD around.

AMD Restructuring PlanThe move to put Ms Sue in charge was planned well in advance according to ex-CEO Rory Read. “I look at it as a natural move here,” Read said. “She’s a semiconductor professional. She loves this space.” "The part I'm good at, I've already done," Read's referring to the restructuring phase of the company. Read followed with "Lisa is uniquely positioned for the next phase."

What's different this time around is that AMD's leadership position is held by an engineer once again. Lisa holds a doctorate in electrical engineering from MIT and has previously held key semiconductor research and development positions. Ex-CEO Rory Read will remain with AMD for the remainder of the year taking on an advisory role to make sure the transition goes as smoothly as possible.