STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Ericsson (ERICb.ST) CEO Hans Vestberg has told directors he has no plans to step down from the company following a report he is among candidates to take over from Microsoft Corp’s (MSFT.O) Steve Ballmer, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday.
Ballmer announced his retirement plans last August and analysts have discussed candidates including company insiders Satya Nadella and Tony Bates as well as several outsiders.
Vestberg, who was in charge of Ericsson’s exit from its handset joint venture with Sony two years ago, was named as a possible successor, Bloomberg reported earlier this month, citing sources briefed on the software giant’s executive search.
Bloomberg, citing a person familiar with the matter, reported on Wednesday that Vestberg told the board he remains committed to the Swedish company, the world’s biggest telecoms equipment maker.
Directors were ready to examine a list of potential successors in case he was chosen by Microsoft as CEO, it quoted a second source as saying.
Ericsson, due to report fourth-quarter earnings on Thursday, declined to comment on the report.
Many believe Microsoft may prefer a candidate with more experience in consumer products as it takes on market leaders Apple (AAPL.O) and Samsung (005930.KS) in handsets and tablets after its purchase of Nokia’s NOK1V.HE mobile phone business.
Editing by Anthony Barker