It's no secret that Intel has been trying to put a world of hurt on rival Advanced Micro Devices. Is AMD marketing and sales czar the latest casualty?
News that the outspoken Henri Richard is "departing of his own accord," according to an AMD statement, does little to quell speculation that the smaller chipmaker may have seen its best days gone by. Richard, known for his great one-liners and promises of utter annihilation of the competition, was the man in charge of actually translating AMD's chip advancements into real-world profits.
That hasn't been as easy as making noise. Despite the company's best efforts, with the addition of Dell and other top pc makers to its lineup, it's been having a tough go making headway against Intel. The company's second quarter earnings staged a bit of a comeback following weakness in earlier quarters, but part of that may be attributed to surprising sales strength in the low-end desktop pc market, where profits can be fleeting.
AMD CEO Hector Ruiz at a dinner recently predicted the chipmaker's new server and notebook chip platforms will put the company back in the race, so it seems an odd time for Richard's departure.
AMD says the sales and marketing organization will now report directly to the CEO. Will the closer ties be enough?