Steve Ballmer- net worth, money and more

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Net worth: 16 billion $

Career / Profession: CEO (Former), Microsoft

Man of Dynamic personality

Steven Anthony, more popularly known as Steve Ballmer is a former CEO of Microsoft. On June 11, 1980, he shook hands with Microsoft as a business manager with a mere salary of 50 thousand dollars and climbed up the ladder to become the CEO of the company. He worked in various sectors of Microsoft including sales, support, various company operations and development environment. In ’92, he was Executive Vice President of Sales and Support Dept. In 1998’s July he took the load of Microsoft on his shoulder as the President. In 2000, he was officially named as the CEO of the company. During his tenure as the CEO, Microsoft’s net worth grew from 25 billion dollars to 70 billion dollars. He is well known for his energy and exuberant aura he creates.


Early life

Born on March 24, 1956 in Detroit, Michigan, he was raised in sub urban areas of Farmington Hills. He is a mix of different origins. His father is American Swiss while his mother is American Jewish. He did his schooling from Detroit Country Day School in Beverly Hills. In his college days, he was actively involved in management of football team and working with the school’s newspapers, “The Harvard Crimson newspaper” and “Harvard Advocate”.

Bill gates step down and coronation of Ballmer

Steve Ballmer did not share a healthy relation with Microsoft’s former CEO, Bill Gates. On several occasions, the two were found in heavy arguments. Also when the transition of power was to take place, there was tension all around. Things became so worse that Gates and Ballmer were in few shouting matches. Ballmer once said about the retirement of Gates, “I’m not going to need him for anything. That’s the principle, Use him, yes, need him, no.”


Stepping down: the shocking retirement

Ballmer announced his retirement in 2013, which was an obvious choice to make after losing billions of dollars in different acquisitions. When the news hit the market, price of Microsoft’s stock rebounded. He agreed that his lack of focus in 2000 has affected the company’s global position badly. Ballmer headed his last meeting as the CEO in September of 2013.

Money matters

He was after Roberto Goizueta to come in the billionaire’s list. It was more interesting as he was not the founder. He receives a compensation of $1,276,627(basic salary: $665,833, bonus: $600,000, and other compensation: $10,794).

Interest in sports

Ballmer was also keenly involved in games. He committed to invest 50% (approximately 150 million dollars in 300 million dollars) in renovation of KeyArena. In 2012, Ballmer invested in Hansen’s proposal of constructing a new arena to bring Sonics back in Seattle. They planned to purchase Sacramento Kings. The estimated cost of this plan was 500 million dollar. However, this plan also failed.


Controversies: comments on competing companies

  • Apple

Ballmer once commented, “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance.” He has been criticizing Apple’s cost and once said,” Now I think the tide has turned back the other direction. The economy is helpful. Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment—same piece of hardware—paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that’s a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be”.

  • Open source software

For software and operating systems which are open source, Ballmer says, “They are the cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches”.

  • Google

Ballmer was hugely raged on Google for stealing his employees. He even vowed to “kill Google”.In 2011, Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, he quoted, “You don’t need to be a computer scientist to use a Windows Phone and you do to use an Android phone … It is hard for me to be excited about the Android phones.”


The demise of the great empire

It seems evident that the bad fortune of Ballmer came soon after he announced his retirement. He had to sell off his beach property. He owned this piece of land since 2005, the property worth $169,500 was sold just for $20,000. Also Microsoft lost $18 million dollars because of the Nokia deal which was under Ballmer. The prices of the stocks crashed soon after Ballmer announced his retirement.

Fun facts

  • He was a graduate from Harvard University and has a degree in Applied Mathematics and Economics.
  • He worked as Assistant Product Manager at Procter & Gamble.
  • He has also set the record of being the first person from Microsoft Stock Options to come in the billionaire list.
  • He was ranked 21 on Forbes list of richest people on Earth.

From his heart through his mouth

  •  “The number one benefit of information technology is that it empowers people to do what they want to do. It lets people be creative. It lets people be productive. It lets people learn things they didn’t think they could learn before, and so in a sense it is all about potential.”
  •  “All companies of any size have to continue to push to make sure you get the right leaders, the right team, the right people to be fast acting, and fast moving in the marketplace. We’ve got great leaders, and we continue to attract and promote great new leaders.”
  •  “Great companies have high cultures of accountability, it comes with this culture of criticism I was talking about before, and I think our culture is strong on that.”
  • “I have lots of sources of information about what’s going on at the company. I think I have a pretty good pulse on where we are and what people are thinking.”

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