Intel's former CEO Paul Otellini dies at 66

Though Otellini did not have a formal degree in engineering, his leadership proved prosperous for Intel.

Former Intel CEO Paul Otellini died in his sleep on 2 October, 2017Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Paul Otellini, who led Intel from 2005 to mid-2013 as chief executive, has died, according to a company statement. The 66-year-old philanthropist died on Monday (2 October) in his sleep. Otellini, who started working at Intel in 1974, rose within the company, eventually taking up the position of CEO in 2005. He retired in 2013 and was succeeded by the chipset giant's current chief Brian Krzanich.

Though Otellini did not have a formal degree in engineering, his leadership proved prosperous for Intel, which made significant strategic, technological and financial advancements during his eight-year stint. Notably, he helped Intel win the chip-making business for Apple's Mac, which previously used PowerPC processors.

"We are deeply saddened by Paul's passing. He was the relentless voice of the customer in a sea of engineers, and he taught us that we only win when we put the customer first," Krzanich said in a statement.

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According to Intel, Otellini transformed the company's operations and cost structure for long-term growth, maintained profitability during the global recession, took on the competition and helped the company expand in security, software and mobile communications.

During Otellini's tenure, the company generated more revenue than it did in the previous 45 years. Before he took over as CEO, Intel had $34bn (£25.6bn) in sales revenue which soared to $53bn (£40bn) by the beginning of 2012.

"Paul's business acumen, optimism and dedication fuelled our growth throughout his tenure as CEO," Intel Chairman Andy Bryant said. "His tireless drive, discipline and humility were cornerstones of his leadership and live on in our company values to this day."

After his retirement, Otellini mentored youngsters and supported several charitable organisations including the San Francisco Symphony and San Francisco General Hospital Foundation. He is survived by his wife Sandy, son Patrick and daughter Alexis.

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