Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf will be retiring June 30 after a successful 26-year run with the company. He will be replaced by Qualcomm President Cristiano Amon. Amon has been with the company since 1995. While there are always concerns when there is a change in leadership, I get the sense they will continue on their current successful path. Let me explain why.
First, Steve Mollenkopf has done a great job of not only managing this important company over several decades. He has also steered the company through a variety of long-term legal issues and challenges with other companies and the US Government, which are now successfully resolved.
CEO Steve Mollenkopf grew Qualcomm over 26 years
During this tumultuous time, he has continued to grow Qualcomm to its strongest and highest level ever.
Qualcomm also has what may be the most meaningful and impressive Patent library in the wireless industry.
Even during the current Covid-19 pandemic, Qualcomm has continued to show strong and rapid growth helping wireless networks, smartphone and tablet makers and other companies grow by upgrading their systems, not only here in the United States, but worldwide.
So, Mollenkopf has been a solid leader behind one of the most important wireless companies over the last few decades.
Bottom line, Mollenkopf has done a great job making Qualcomm larger and stronger than ever before.
Cristiano Amon is next CEO of Qualcomm
The next logical question is who could replace Mollenkopf as the next CEO? Who would be able to continue the Qualcomm growth story? Who would be able to handle any bumps in the road?
Mollenkopf and Qualcomm say the answer to that question is Cristiano Amon, who will become the next CEO at the end of June.
Amon is currently President of Qualcomm and has vast experience not only with the wireless industry in general, but with Qualcomm in particular.
He has been working closely with Mollenkopf through all the ups and downs Qualcomm has faced over recent years. So, he understands the opportunities and the challenges.
He brings not only his own knowledge set, expertise and style, but also the lessons learned working closely with Mollenkopf for years through all the major challenges and growth opportunities they faced through today.
When a company selects someone from the outside or someone who is not as well known, there is always a ting of uncertainty. Not here.
5G wireless remains growth opportunity for Qualcomm
Amon may be one of the most certain and stable choices. He has been working in leadership for quite a long time at Qualcomm and taking over as CEO should be a natural next step for both him and the company.
Going forward, I expect Qualcomm to continue on the same path with the same growth curve. That means bringing wireless networks, smartphone and tablet makers and other wireless companies into the world of 5G globally.
The challenge for Amon will be to sense the coming industry changes and keeping the company on target.
Similar to the way retail stores put spring-time fashion out in the middle of winter, Qualcomm does something similar. They work ahead of the curve.
Qualcomm looking ahead to 6G wireless
They have been working on 5G for many years already. Even before it became part of the public dialog. They are always working years ahead of the game.
Today, Qualcomm is working on using 5G to bring self-driving cars and autonomous driving to reality in the next few years. They are working with the medical and health care industry to bring advanced telemedicine and more. They are working with retailers to bring advanced shopping to reality, and so much more.
So, if they work ahead of the curve, what will they be working on tomorrow? They will begin the path to 6G even though we are just entering 5G today. That’s right. 6G is next on the hit parade and it is coming.
Challenges and opportunities for Qualcomm going forward
These are just some of many big areas Qualcomm and Amon must stay on top of. And that’s the big challenge he will have as new CEO.
Amon has been in a leadership position at Qualcomm for a long time. He understands the changing company and the changing industry.
Those are just some of the reasons I think Amon is a good choice for the next CEO of Qualcomm.
As I see it, as the mantle is passed officially on June 30, the work should continue without a hitch.
So, let me say great work and congratulations to Steve Mollenkopf in leading Qualcomm to the successful position they are in today.
Let me also wish Cristiano Amon continued success moving forward for years to come.
We know where Qualcomm is today. Where will they be tomorrow? That’s the next big question. That’s a path and goal which will soon be up to Amon.
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