After weeks of speculation, we still know just one fact. Steve Ballmer is stepping down as the CEO of Microsoft. Since that bombshell hit, names of candidates to replace him have been all over the place, but most pundits seem to have narrowed their guessing down to only a few choices. Tony Bates, Satya Nadella and Steven Elop have all been bandied about as top choices, but the perceived front runner, and perhaps the best possible choice that Microsoft could make, is Alan Mulally, the current chief at Ford Motor Company, and former head of Boeing.
Mulally is largely credited with turning the auto company around, making it profitable while its rivals failed. Microsoft would do well to have that same kind of boost, but according to a statement made earlier today at the unveiling of the 2015 Mustang, that likely won't happen. Edsel Ford II, great-grandson of founder Henry Ford, stated that Mulally "is staying through the end of 2014, and that’s all I know".
That's a rather brief, but emphatic, statement. Shortly after the comment was released, Microsoft shares fell three-percent. For his part, Mulally has not yet made any sort of public statement, so the door is not completely closed. However, one can likely assume that the Board has received some sort of assurance from the CEO.