August 27, 2010

Microsoft CFO heads to new post at GM

Windows Vista logo.
Windows Vista logo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Chris Liddell joins General Motors as vice chairman and chief financial officer. He'll start at GM in the new year. 

Christopher P. Liddell (born April 24, 1958) was the Vice Chairman and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of General Motors (GM). Liddell joined GM in January 2010, and led the company’s global finance operations until March 2011.

In 2012, Liddell was Executive Director of Transition Planning for the Romney Presidential Campaign. He also was a director and treasurer of the Romney for President fundraising campaign, a joint fundraising vehicle with the Republican National Committee (RNC).

Previously, Liddell was a Senior Vice President and CFO of Microsoft where, from 2005 to 2009, he was responsible for leading their worldwide finance organization. His responsibilities included overseeing corporate strategy, acquisitions, treasury activities, tax planning, accounting and reporting, internal audits and investor relations. Liddell left Microsoft in December 2009.

Prior to Microsoft, from 2003 to 2005, Liddell served as CFO of International Paper. From 1999 to 2002, he was Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Carter Holt Harvey, a forest products firm and then New Zealand’s second largest listed company. He had been CFO of Carter Holt Harvey from 1995 to 1998.

Liddell holds an Engineering degree with honors from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, and a Master of Philosophy degree from Oxford University in England.

A native of New Zealand, Liddell has served as director of the New Zealand Rugby Union and governor of the New Zealand Sports Foundation. Liddell is a Distinguished Alumnus of the University of Auckland and a patron of the University’s fundraising campaign. He was chairman of Project Crimson, a conservation group, and is active in a number of environmental projects in New Zealand, such as the restoration of Rotoroa Island.

He was also a member of the Securities and Exchange Commission's Advisory Committee on Improvements to Financial Reporting.

Liddell married Renee Harbers in March 2011.

About Microsoft
 Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington, that develops, manufactures, licenses, supports and sells computer software, consumer electronics and personal computers and services. Its best known software products are the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems, Microsoft Office office suite, and Internet Explorer web browser. Its flagship hardware products are Xbox game console and the Microsoft Surface series of tablets. It is the world's largest software maker measured by revenues. It is also one of the world's most valuable companies.

Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975 to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for Altair 8800. It rose to dominate the personal computer operating system market with MS-DOS in the mid-1980s, followed by the Microsoft Windows. The company's 1986 initial public offering, and subsequent rise in its share price, created an estimated three billionaires and 12,000 millionaires from Microsoft employees. Since the 1990s, it has increasingly diversified from the operating system market and has made a number of corporate acquisitions. In May 2011, Microsoft acquired Skype Technologies for $8.5 billion in its largest acquisition to date.

As of 2013, Microsoft is market dominant in both the IBM PC-compatible operating system and office software suite markets (the latter with Microsoft Office). The company also produces a wide range of other software for desktops and servers, and is active in areas including Internet search (with Bing), the video game industry (with the Xbox, Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles), the digital services market (through MSN), and mobile phones (via the Windows Phone OS). In June 2012, Microsoft entered the personal computer production market for the first time, with the launch of the Microsoft Surface, a line of tablet computers.

With the acquisition of Nokia's devices and services division to form Microsoft Mobile Oy, the company will re-enter the smartphone hardware market, after its previous attempt, Microsoft Kin, which resulted from their acquisition of Danger Inc.

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