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Shares rise as tech company Intel replaces its chief executive

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Intel is replacing its chief executive after only two years, but it has been a rough stretch for the chipmaker.

Bob Swan, who became the company’s chief executive in early 2019, will be replaced in mid-February by industry veteran Pat Gelsinger.

Shares spiked 8% on news of the change at the top.

The Santa Clara, California, company said on Wednesday that the change in leadership is unrelated to its financial performance last year, but the surprise shakeup followed several weeks of investor activism by hedge fund Third Point, which had pushed for big changes.

Intel acknowledged in late December that it had received a letter from the fund and was working with it on ideas “regarding enhanced shareholder value”.

In mid-2020, Intel disclosed that there would be a substantial delay in its development of a next-generation chipmaking process already in use by a major Taiwan supplier, TSMC.

The unexpected snag meant that Intel’s seven-nanometer processing technology is unlikely to be ready until the end of 2022 or early 2023, potentially putting the company behind its rivals.

Mr Gelsinger has been the chief executive of VMware since 2012 and has more than four decades of experience in the tech industry.

He spent most of that time with Intel Corp, where he began his career and was its first chief technology officer.

Intel chairman Omar Ishrak said in a prepared statement that “the board concluded that now is the right time to make this leadership change to draw on Pat’s technology and engineering expertise during this critical period of transformation at Intel”.

Mr Swan, a former chief financial officer at Intel, assumed interim leadership in 2018 after chief executive Brian Krzanich resigned after the company learned of what it called a past, consensual relationship with an employee.

After a search, Intel confirmed Mr Swan as chief executive in early 2019.

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Iran

Russia ready to export Iran’s extra enriched uranium: Ryabkov

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TEHRAN, Jan. 27 (MNA) – Russian Deputy Foreign Minister voiced Moscow’s readiness to export Iran’s surplus enriched uranium if the United States returns to the Nuclear Deal.

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Iran

Taliban leaders determined to fight US: Shamkhani

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Taliban leaders determined to fight US: Shamkhani

“In today’s meeting with the #Taliban political delegation: I found the leaders of this group determined to fight the United States,” he said.

“Someone who has been under US torture at #Guantanamo for 13 years, has not given up fighting the #UnitedStates in the region.”

Taliban political delegation headed by Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who arrived in Tehran yesterday, met and held talks withShamkhani on Wednesday.

Referring to the history of the US incitement to war in the region, Shamkhani said, “The United States does not seek peace and security in Afghanistan. The US strategy is the continuation of war and bloodshed between the various factions of Afghanistan.”

“The United States is pursuing peace talks with the aim of creating a stalemate in the negotiations between the various Afghan parties to blame them for insecurity and instability,” he added.

Stating that Iran will never recognize the group that wants to rule Afghanistan through war, Shamkhani stressed the need for the participation of all ethnic groups in determining the fate of Afghanistan in a completely peaceful process.

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World

Plant producing AstraZeneca vaccines partially evacuated over suspect package

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A plant in Wales that produces AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine has been partially evacuated after a suspicious package was received, the company that operates it said on Wednesday.

“Wockhardt UK in Wrexham this morning received a suspicious package to site. All relevant authorities were immediately notified and engaged,” the company said, referring to its facility in Wales.

“Upon expert advice we have partially evacuated the site pending a full investigation. The safety of our employees and business continuity remain of paramount importance.”

Earlier, the BBC reported that a police bomb disposal unit has been sent to the plant.

“We are currently dealing with an ongoing incident on the Wrexham Industrial Estate,” local police said in a statement, adding that the public should avoid the area.

Wockhardt UK provides fill-and-finish capacity for AstraZeneca’s UK supply chain, which is the final manufacturing step of putting vaccines into vials or syringes and packaging them.

AstraZeneca has agreed to supply Britain with 100 million doses of the vaccine, developed by Oxford University.

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