Gates: Staying put until my 50s

Rohit Khare (
Thu, 3 Apr 97 19:35:53 -0500


REDMOND, WASH.--He does not intend to turn over his job to a successor any
time soon, but Microsoft Corp. CEO Bill Gates said today he does not plan to
run the company long after he turns 50.

"I can't think of being 60 and running the company. By then I will pick a new
CEO," Gates said in an interview at the company's headquarters here. He did
not offer a specific point in time when he might consider turning over the
reins to a younger executive.

At the same time, however, the 41-year-old technology tycoon brushed aside
suggestions that he is considering a mid-life career change a la Texas
billionaire and two-time presidential candidate Ross Perot.

"I'm specialized," Gates said. "Software is a big change agent in the world
today. I think I have the best job in the world. ... The challenges running a
technology company are even greater than running some other kind of company.
The rules change faster in this business.

"Microsoft is my professional life," he added. "I am an engineer. I don't see
that changing."