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Components & Peripherals News

Intel Board Chair Shakeup: Omar Ishrak Out, Frank Yeary In

Dylan Martin

The change-up is coming at a critical time for Intel, which recently began a multi-year, multibillion-dollar cost-cutting campaign as the company tries to regain its chip design and manufacturing mojo through a comeback plan by CEO Pat Gelsinger.

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Frank D. Yeary

Intel’s board of directors is getting a leadership shakeup with longtime director Frank D. Yeary taking over as chair from Omar Ishrak as the semiconductor giant navigates a shaky economy.

The change-up, announced Monday evening, is coming at a critical time for Intel, which recently began a multi-year, multibillion-dollar cost-cutting campaign as the company tries to regain its chip design and manufacturing mojo through a comeback plan by CEO Pat Gelsinger.

Ishrak, who became Intel’s chair in early 2020, will remain on the board as an independent director.

With the switch in board chair, Intel is trading in industry expertise for investor acumen.

[RELATED STORY: Intel’s 6 Most Highly Compensated Execs; Pat Gelsinger Leads]

Whereas Ishrak has a long history serving in top leadership roles at medical device vendors Medtronic and GE Healthcare, Yeary is a finance type with plenty of experience in investing, advising public companies, and leading strategy on mergers and acquisitions.

Omar Ishrak
Omar Ishrak

Yeary, who has been on Intel’s board since 2009, is a managing member at private investment firm Darwin Capital Advisors. He is also a co-founder of CamberView Partners, a firm that advises public companies on various investor-related matters, including situations where companies listed on Wall Street are facing pressure from activist investors, according to a 2019 article by the firm.

Prior to those roles, Yeary was vice chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley, and previously worked in the finance industry for 25 years. Among the finance roles he held was global head of mergers and acquisitions at Citigroup Investment Banking.

Intel is currently not the subject of activist investors, who pressure public companies to make changes by gaining an equity stake. But the company has not been faring well with investors, as evidenced by its stock price, which is down more than 50 percent since Gelsinger took over as CEO in February 2021.

Gelsinger has high hopes for what Yeary can accomplish as Intel’s new chair.

“I’m pleased to welcome Frank as chair of Intel’s board. His expertise in unlocking stockholder value, focus on corporate governance and familiarity with Intel are powerful assets to both the board and the company as we execute our strategy,” Gelsinger said in a statement.

Yeary said he’s “deeply honored to take on this expanded role during such a pivotal time for Intel.”

“While the company certainly has big tasks ahead of it, I’m confident we have the right strategy in place. It’s imperative that we execute well and simultaneously deliver value to our stockholders,” his statement read.

At the same time, Gelsinger thanked Ishrak for his “tremendous contributions” as the board’s chair.

“He was instrumental in bringing me back to the company as CEO and has fostered a high-impact working dynamic across the board and management team,” Gelsinger said.

Learn More: CPUs-GPUs
Dylan Martin

Dylan Martin is a senior editor at CRN covering the semiconductor, PC, mobile device, and IoT beats. He has distinguished his coverage of the semiconductor industry thanks to insightful interviews with CEOs and top executives; scoops and exclusives about product, strategy and personnel changes; and analyses that dig into the why behind the news.   He can be reached at dmartin@thechannelcompany.com.

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