Advanced Micro Devices Chief Executive Dirk Meyer has resigned and will be replaced by Chief Financial Officer Thomas Seifert while the chipmaker searches for a permanent replacement, the company said on Monday.
The change will accelerate AMD's ability to "establish market leadership and generate superior financial returns," by Bruce Claflin, the chairman of AMD's board of directors, said in a statement.
AMD shares fell 4.1 percent in extended trading to $US8.81 ($8.89) from a close of $US9.19.
The departure of the 49-year-old Meyer, who headed the team that developed one of AMD's most successful chips before becoming CEO in 2008, caught one Wall Street analyst by surprise.
"I thought he did a good job getting the company into a different direction rather than trying to compete against Intel on a head to head basis," said Kevin Cassidy, an analyst at Stifel Nicolaus.
AMD is the No.2 maker of PC microprocessors, behind Intel, whose chips are used in more than 80 percent of the world's PCs.
AMD also said its fourth quarter revenue increased 2 percent sequentially to $1.65 billion, with gross profit margin of roughly 45 percent. The company is scheduled to deliver full fourth quarter results on Thursday, Jan. 20. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S expected fourth-quarter sales of $US1.62 billion, with a 45.4 percent gross margin.
Seifert, 47, will maintain his current duties as CFO and has asked not to be considered for the permanent CEO job, according to the company's statement.
(Reporting by Alexei Oreskovic and Noel Randewich; editing by Carol Bishopric)