Intel CEO Bob Swan will step down in February, the company announced on Wednesday.

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Intel has named VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger as Swan's replacement. Shares are jumping on the developments.

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The company confirmed Gelsinger, who has a 40-year career in the technology industry, will take the reins on Feb. 15.

“My goal over the past two years has been to position Intel for a new era of distributed intelligence, improving execution to strengthen our core CPU franchise and extending our reach to accelerate growth,” said Swan. “With significant progress made across those priorities, we’re now at the right juncture to make this transition to the next leader of Intel."

Intel was the target of activist investor Dan Loeb last year. At the time, the company told FOX Business, it "looks forward" to engaging with Third Point's Loeb after the activist investor urged the tech giant to explore strategic alternatives, including whether the company should continue to be an "integrated device manufacturer" as well as potentially pursuing "divestment of certain failed acquisitions."

CNBC was first to report Swan's departure.

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Intel shares have fallen over 10% in the last 12 months underperforming the 16% jump in the S&P 500.


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