Microsoft is close to appointing Satya Nadella as the software empire's new chief executive, a new report suggests.
Nadella, who currently heads the company's cloud computing division and enterprise business, is tipped to replace Microsoft's longstanding CEO Steve Ballmer and, according to the rumour, may even replace co-founder Bill Gates as company chairman.
According to Bloomberg, Gates's possible resignation as chairman would not necessarily mean he will have no impact on the company.
The article reads: "Even if Gates steps down as chairman, he may be more involved in the company, said two people familiar with the matter".
Microsoft, which is now approaching its 39th anniversary, has been led by Gates and Ballmer throughout the lifetime of the business. The corporation has spent five months searching for a new chief executive, and recently claimed a new appointment will be announced in "early 2014".
In January, Microsoft reported a net income of $6.5 billion (£3.9 bn) for the quarter, outperforming expectations.
India-born Nadella, 47, joined Microsoft in 1992 and currently manages one of the fastest growing sectors within the company. Microsoft's commercial cloud services have produced double the revenue they generated one year ago, according to Microsoft.
In July, Microsoft restructured its divisions and appointed Julie Larson-Green as its head of the Devices and Studios Engineering Group - which manages the Xbox executive team.