Semi-monthly news and updates about the homes, people, businesses and communities that are featured in Lake Washington 130 Homes. This covers the Lake Washington waterfront in Seattle’s Madison Park, Denny-Blaine and Madrona neighborhoods, Mercer Island, and The Eastside communities of Bellevue, Medina, Hunts Point and Yarrow Point.
(The above home belongs to Charles Simonyi. See 5/31/11 post.)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ballmer Worst CEO - Forbes


Steve Ballmer’s Hunts Point Mansion
“#1 – Steve Ballmer, Microsoft. Without a doubt, Mr. Ballmer is the worst CEO of a large publicly traded American company today.” This is the first sentence about Steve Ballmer in a 5/12/12 Forbes article by Adam Hartung titled: “Oops! Five CEOs Who Should Have Already Been Fired (Cisco, GE, WalMart, Sears, Microsoft)
The article continues: “Not only has he singlehandedly steered Microsoft out of some of the fastest growing and most lucrative tech markets (mobile music, handsets and tablets) but in the process he has sacrificed the growth and profits of not only his company but “ecosystem” companies such as Dell, Hewlett Packard and even Nokia. The reach of his bad leadership has extended far beyond Microsoft when it comes to destroying shareholder value – and jobs.
“Microsoft peaked at $60/share in 2000, just as Mr. Ballmer took the reins. . . only rarely made it back to its current low $30s value. . . execution of new rollouts were constantly delayed, and ended up with products so lacking in any enhanced value . . . as Apple took the leadership position in personal technology.
So today . . . Microsoft is a PC company, nothing more, as demand for PCs shifts to mobile. . . An insane bet for any CEO – and one that would have been avoided entirely had the Microsoft Board replaced Mr. Ballmer years ago . . .
Although he’s #19 on Forbes list of billionaires, Mr. Ballmer should not be allowed to take such incredible risks with investor money and employee jobs. Best he be retired to enjoy his fortune rather than deprive investors and employees of building theirs.”

Steve joined Microsoft in 1980 for a percentage of the company, a $50,000 annual salary and stock options. He was Microsoft’s 24th employee and first manager other than Gates and Allen. The Hunts Point mansion of Steve and Connie Ballmer is pictured above. They purchased the estate in 1987 for $1.3 million and extensively renovated the buildings, but maintained their charm, in 1991. The mansion and property has a $10 million estimated value. The main house is 4,175 sq ft and the property is 2.09 acres with 160 feet of waterfront. It is adjacent to the south of Craig McCaw’s (formerly Kenny G’s) mansion (4/30/12 post). The neighborhood is covered in a 2/16/11 Lake Washington Cruising post.

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