New Microsoft director is planned to reduce the company’s focus on Windows

February 3, 2014 2:22 pm

Mason Morfit, who is the President of ValueAct Holdings LP and an investor, who is set to join the Board of Directors of Microsoft Corp., is said to seek a change in Microsoft’s tradition concerning how it sells its flagship products. The company is currently believed to be preparing Satya Nadella for the position of Chief Executive Officer.

People with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be named because the information is private, said that Morfit and ValueAct are believed to want Microsoft, the largest software manufacturer in the world, to shift their focus away from Windows – the operating system that lies in most of the company’s offerings. The company has been focused on selling applications and server software, which were designed to work especially for Windows, for about twenty years now.

Now it is ValueAct’s desire to see Microsoft put more of its efforts to unchain products and services from Windows. ValueAct believes this will give Microsoft’s products the opportunity to become more widely adopted on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. The people familiar with these issues explained that if the company invests its efforts in spreading a bunch of programs that are typically run on Windows, they could also be used on Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co.’s devices, which on the other hand, work under other operating systems. Such a move is intended to reinforce the company’s growth in the direction of mobile devices, and keep it away from the decreasing interest on the personal computing niche.

Mason Morfit is said by the people, who asked to stay anonymous, that he plans to push this agenda behind the scenes, with the help of some persuasion and data. As Bloomberg reported, Mr. Morfit said in a lecture series at Stanford University’s Rock Center for Corporate Governance in 2012: “We have found over time that the most effective way to get what you what accomplished is behind the scenes. For us it’s just a truism that people will do what you want if they like you and if you haven’t publicly humiliated them.”

Microsoft Corp.’s share price rose by 2.66% on Friday to $37.84, and its one-year return rate is 39.57% up. The 27 analysts offering 12-month price forecasts for CNNMoney have a median target of $39.00, with a high estimate of $45.00 and a low estimate of $29.00. The median estimate represents a +3.07% increase from the latest close price.

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