The announcement of Steve Ballmer’s impending retirement from the position of CEO of Microsoft could potentially have an impact on content writing services. Microsoft is the corporation behind Bing, the UK’s second largest search engine by market share, and of course Windows, the most popular desktop operating system.
In Ballmer’s 13 years in charge of Microsoft, the world’s largest software producer, many new markets were entered and the company posted a mixed bag of results. Bing was a late entry to the market for search, and while it will take something special to shift Google from their number one position, Microsoft have at least managed to usurp Yahoo from second place.
In a very eventful couple of weeks for Microsoft, first Ballmer announced that these would be his final 12 months in charge, while in the same month a takeover deal for Nokia said to be worth over $7 billion was announced. The deal is not a great surprise as with the great efforts being made on developing the Windows Phone operating system, it made sense to acquire the hardware side of the business, even if there was a working agreement between Nokia and Microsoft already in place.
However the news sent Microsoft shares tumbling as the market reacted to the news. Embarrassingly for Ballmer the fall was similar to the rise in share price that greeted his announcement that he was to leave the company within a year.
Ballmer made several acquisitions during his time in charge of Microsoft. In fact Ballmer spent 12 times as much in 13 years as Microsoft had in their history before he became CEO.
The Nokia mobile acquisition is one of many areas Microsoft has bought into in what can be described as a ‘fast second’ strategy towards new tech markets throughout Ballmer’s 13 year reign. Entering the console market was a success as the Xbox 360 managed to overthrow Sony’s dominance in the previous console generation, even if Nintendo still managed to sell the most units in the generation.
Bing was also late to the party, and while a mere 5% of the UK search market does not seem like much, it is more than can be expected in a market which is one of the world’s biggest monopolies. If the search engine can continue to gradually increase its market share it will become more and more relevant for content writing services. Microsoft has also made high profile acquisitions for businesses like Skype, replacing its own internet messaging services Windows Live Messenger, despite the services popularity.
With a diverse variety of businesses that complement the core products such as the Windows Operating Systems and the Office packages that the company is built upon, Ballmer saw it as appropriate to rearrange the company into distinct segments for devices, operating systems, applications and the cloud.
It may well be that the reorganisation of the company will have a bigger impact on the employees than the loss of their CEO. Ballmer will be remembered for a number of acquisitions, and since many were examples of Microsoft entering a market late on, they may well prove to be successes in the future. Content writing services may well be more concerned with Bing than Google in the future, but that is certainly a future which will not occur before