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Lenovo president Rory Read jumps to AMD in extra blow to PCs

updated 10:05 am EDT, Thu August 25, 2011

Lenovo ThinkPad pioneer leaves for AMD

The PC world took another hit Thursday after AMD said it had hired away Lenovo president and COO Rory Read. The executive will now be AMD's CEO, president, and board of directors member. Read's exit takes effect immediately.

Lenovo hasn't detailed who would replace Read. The veteran is replacing Tom Seifert, who stepped in as a temporary CEO after the sudden resignation of long-serving company leader Dirk Meyer at the start of the year.

Read's departure could affect Lenovo's PC strategy. Having served 23 years at IBM before heading to Lenovo with IBM's PC spinoff in 2005, he has played an important part in building up the home computer businesses at both companies, most of all at Lenovo. Many credit his becoming president of Lenovo at 2009 with starting a quick rise in the company's PC business. As of mid-year, Lenovo was one of the few Windows PC makers growing quickly in the world. Lenovo's inherent advantage as a Chinese company in a growing market, as well as the ThinkPad's reputation, have pushed it past Acer in world share.

He leaves just as HP is mulling giving up PCs and affecting one of Microsoft's most important sources of revenue. Lenovo's impact won't be as serious but will depend heavily on Read's replacement.

PCs will still get some help through the AMD swap. The market is still dominated by Intel, which makes nearly 80 percent of computer processors. An effective command from Read could improve AMD's market share and lead to fiercer competition with lower processor prices and faster chips.

by MacNN Staff





  1. Mr. Strat

    Joined: Dec 1969



    An executive from one crappy company becomes an executive for another crappy company.

  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ThinkPad's reputation

    IBM was able to build a solid reputation on their laptop, 10 years ago the thinkpad was the laptop to beat. Since then, Lenovo has lower the Thinkpad quality and completely stall his design progression. Now Lenovo make tasteless computer like any other asian corp like Acer and Asus.

  1. coffeetime

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ThinkPad's de-reputation

    If IBM is so good at making and keeping up the ThinkPad quality, then, why they sold it? It's like giving away one of GM auto divisions to China. They ask for it. I guess the executives are not getting enough bonus selling PC in U.S. Thanks goodness I don't see that happening from Apple.

  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I don't know all answers, but I think IBM since the birth of PC clone with compaq and other has always got difficulties to gain any market share in this overcrowded-low margin clone market. Look how the current number 1 PC selling corp: HP is following IBM path now. Any corp who stop innovating will decline and PC industry has sit on their both hands and let Microsoft and Intel dictated the plateform where everybody is cloning the same hardware and the same software.

  1. coffeetime

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Make sense. Majority of U.S. brands like Zenith, RCA...etc are handed over to oversea. The same will go with HP's PC division. It seems the success of U.S. innovation is gear more toward business to business (military, medical, heavy machinery industry, corporation) where as consumer innovation are left for oversea to deal with. That makes Apple truly a unique company among the U.S. consumer.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    @BigMac2 and @coffeetime

    HP is leaving the PC business for the same reason IBM did. It was such a small part of their overall strategy/income that it was actually hurting them keeping it. By selling it, they can focus more resources on more profitable parts of their businesses. It has nothing to do with 'innovation'. It has more to do with competition.

    And you should keep this in mind, since this is the fear of the general/hard-core/long-time mac user. Apple's PC business is now a small part of their overall revenue structure now. With adding iOS elements to OS X, it gives people pause that Apple will try to take the Mac down the iOS route altogether, or, worse yet, may end up dumping it in favor of iPads, iPhones, and other devices. Esp. if their forward-thinking minds say "The PC is dead. We're getting out while the getting's good. Tablets and smart phones and set-top boxes and the like are the future".

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