Bill, I know, you are out of that business, sort of. But that is the time to speak out. This is ridiculous.
What is Steve Ballmer doing? He is the CEO, he has to know what the future brings, years ahead. Otherwise he, no one, can truly lead a company or brand.
Come on, buying Skype for $ 8.5 billion? WTF!?
"It was two years after launch, in October 2005, that Skype shook off its skinny startup status and was at the centre of a whopping $2.5bn buyout from eBay, paid half in cash and half in shares." (tnw)
He could have bought it back then - if he had only known where to head with his company. He joined Microsoft in 1980, and is leading (sort of) it since 2000 - he should know.
By acting as a truly visionary leader he could have saved the company some $ 6,000 million!
Or could have saved about the same amount - if he had bought Skype 4 years later from ebay, like those guys did:
"Ebay has agree to sell Skype to a group of private investors including Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen in a deal which values the internet telephony company at $2.75 billion." (wired)
These were the guys who now sold Skype to Steve for $ 8.5 Billion! Ain't that truly ridiculous?
This adds up to 3 misjudgements justs concerning Skype - not to mention the NOKIA thing.
Of course managers do make mistakes and they should be encouraged to do so - but not the same mistake over and over again!
He should pay the on-top out of his private pocket, as he owns "$14.5 billion and is ranked number 46 on the Forbes list of billionaires", or?