AMD's technology chief quits

Advanced Micro Devices' top technology executive is stepping down at the world's second largest microprocessor maker. The company is in the throes of a slump caused by long product delays and tougher competition, an Associated Press report said.

The company said that CTO Phil Hester's resignation is not connected to AMD's financial woes or the recently announced reduction of its global workforce by 10%.

Hester joined the company in 2005 after working for more than two decades at IBM. He was responsible for crafting AMD's technological roadmap over the past three years.

Spokesman Rob Keosheyan declined to give more details about Hester's departure, except to say the position won't be filled because each of AMD's key business units now has its own chief technology officer, a structure Hester helped establish.

Hester's exit comes as AMD battles to reverse steep losses and fend off a resurgent Intel, AMD's much larger rival. Intel lost substantial market share to AMD a couple years ago as customers demanded more energy-efficient chips. Now AMD is struggling against Intel's new products, largely because technical difficulties have delayed its own chips getting to market, most notably the Opteron server chip by eight months. It is also carrying heavy costs related to its US$5.6 billion (€3.56 billion) acquisition of graphics chip maker ATI Technologies.