Published: Mon, October 26, 2015
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Steve Ballmer says Microsoft employees who leave for Amazon eventually come back

Steve Ballmer says Microsoft employees who leave for Amazon eventually come back

According to Ballmer, Microsoft is the only one that can take on the company; "if there's going to be any competition at all for Apple it will come from Microsoft".

Ballmer had kinder words for Apple but thinks that Microsoft will be in a better position to compete with Apple with the new Surface Book. No one else is really trying to compete with them anymore in a serious way with hardware.

Ballmer also said that he had taken a 4% stake in Twitter Inc., which he revealed last week before Jack Dorsey was selected as permanent CEO. If you go back to 1997, when Steve came back, when they were nearly bankrupt, we made an investment in Apple as part of settling a lawsuit.

During the interview Ballmer, who remains the largest single shareholder in Microsoft, also reminisced about Microsoft's $150m investment in Apple, which is thought to have saved Cupertino from extinction. The truth of the matter is: who is going to get to those categories first?

Ballmer said that you've got to remember that there is a competition between the two but that they are a place people don't want to work. You could basically say Microsoft and Samsung. Amazon denied the claims after the release and said the report tried to make it seem like it was a soul-crushing experience to work for them. Since Ballmer left Microsoft past year, handing over to current popular CEO Satya Nadella, he has refrained from heavily commenting on the company. "Microsoft or Apple. Those are really the only two companies who have that software/hardware skill". The former Microsoft CEO quickly swung his favour back towards his old company, though, commending last month's device launch as showing it is the only true competitor to Apple and something that "will give them a good run for their money".

Ballmer has long talked about Microsoft's hardware and software strengths, especially after the Nokia acquisition he helped orchestrate.

He said the tablet-laptop hybrid Surface Book is a new category of PC that will go after the MacBook. It's an innovative category.

On Uber, Ballmer said he loves the company, and even though he doesn't understand the business' economics, he noted that it's a "heck of a service".

In the agreement, Microsoft agreed to an investment worth $150 million in Apple in exchange for non-voting stock shares. Fortune 500 company based in Seattle, opened on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection.

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