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Ballmer and Gates argue against splitting up Microsoft

updated 06:45 pm EST, Tue November 16, 2010

Executives claim to have considered new strategies

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and chairman Bill Gates both argued against a shareholder's suggestion that it may be "time to consider breaking the company up." During a meeting with a number of shareholders, Ballmer proclaimed such a move would not be useful and might inadvertently lead to "economic dis-synergies."

The executive reaffirmed that Microsoft's top product categories include Xbox, Windows and Windows Phones, with all segments working together in a variety of ways. Ballmer did admit, however, that the company has taken a "proper, disciplined look" at the idea of splitting up the company.

"Divesting something only means creating a harder time competing for all relevant parties," Ballmer said.

Gates supported Ballmer's comments, adding that Microsoft's hiring practices and the scale of Microsoft Research has been a "real strength." The chairman cited Office's cloud-based features and the integration of gaming and communication systems as examples of how the system has worked in unity.

"I don't think there's a line where you'll find net simplicity by trying to create a new company," Gates said.

Shareholders reappointed all existing members of Microsoft's board, despite disappointment by some shareholders over the stagnant stock price and dividend payouts. [via TechFlash]

by MacNN Staff



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