Adam Hartung is in a bad mood these days. The Forbes analyst made headlines last year when he labeled Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer as “the worst CEO of a large publicly traded company”.
Back then he said that Microsoft’s monopoly over the personal computing industry had evaporated, and consumers no longer had a desire to upgrade products created by Microsoft. In other words, the best days of Windows, Office and several such software products were behind them.
Now the angry analyst, who also serves as a managing partner at a consulting firm by the name of Spark Partners, said in a recent blog post that things have not improved one bit for Microsoft, and the technology game is pretty much over for the company:
“Failure is already inevitable. At this stage, not even a new CEO can save Microsoft. Steve Ballmer played ‘Bet the Company’ on the long-delayed release of Win8, losing the chance to refocus Microsoft on other growing divisions with greater chance of success.”
He goes on to say that Microsoft could be forced to lay off thousands of employees in the coming years, close divisions, and even sell of its entertainment division to companies like Sony. Hard stuff to digest, but Hartung estimates that up to 60 percent of Microsoft’s workforce will be fired in the near future:
“No longer is Microsoft seen as a leader, and instead it is rapidly losing market relevancy as people look to Apple, Google, Amazon, Samsung, Facebook and others for leadership. The declining sales, and lack of customer interest will lead to a tailspin at Microsoft not unlike what happened to RIM.”
Adam lays the bulk of the blame on CEO Steve Ballmer, saying while Microsoft’s decline is inevitable, the only way forward is for Ballmer to relinquish his post and retire. He concludes:
“Game over. Ballmer loses. And if you keep your money invested in Microsoft it will disappear along with the company.”
While some of the figures and statistics he provided in his blog for Windows 8, Windows RT and Windows XP were very inaccurate, this much is clear, the guy seems to have some definite grudge against the Redmond company.
Only time will tell whether he gets to eat his (very strong) words or not.