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VMware's CEO Swap

Few could have foreseen the shocking departure of VMware CEO Diane Greene today, less than a year after the virtualization specialist was grabbing the headlines for its whopping $1.7 billion IPO.

Last summer VMware was that rarest of beasts; a niche technology company enjoying rapid growth at a time when more established vendors were becoming increasingly anxious about the vagaries of the economy.

Even now, almost 12 months after VMwares August IPO, there are only hints as to why EMC chief Joe Tucci and the VMware board decided to swap out Greene with EMC exec Paul Maritz.

Despite spinning off part of VMware in last year’s IPO, EMC still maintains an 86 percent stake in the company, and shows no signs of relinquishing any more control.

Greene’s contract was up this month, according to an article in Fortune, and there has been speculation that Greene and Tucci may have differed over how much independence to give VMware. The virtualization giant, for example, has strong links with IBM, which is a key competitor of EMC.

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