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On Thursday, Edsel Ford II, a director of Ford Motor Co. (F - Analyst Report) and the great-grandson of founder Henry Ford, revealed that CEO Alan Mulally plans to stay with the automaker till the end of 2014. The statement came amid rumors of Mulally replacing Microsoft Corporation’s (MSFT - Analyst Report) CEO Steve Ballmer, when the latter retires next year.

Mulally also told the media that he has not made any changes in his earlier plans. However, he did not reveal whether he had been approached for the Microsoft job.

This could also imply that he will retain his position at Ford till the end of next year and join Microsoft thereafter. However, some analysts are of the opinion that he is in talks with the computer giant and might alter his plans of receiving an offer.

Mulally has been Ford’s president and CEO since Sep 5, 2006. He has helped the automaker counter recessionary impacts, avoid bankruptcy and eventually generate higher profits. Prior to Ford, Mulally was a part of The Boeing Company (BA - Analyst Report).

Former Nokia Corporation (NOK - Analyst Report) CEO Stephen Elop is also said to be in the running for the position of Microsoft CEO. Microsoft Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner, as well as executives Satya Nadella and Tony Bates are other possible candidates.

Shares of Ford gained 1.44% to reach $16.86 on Thursday, before closing at $16.74. The increase was driven by the statements of Edsel Ford II and Mulally as well as the launch of the new Mustang.

Yesterday, Ford unveiled the sixth generation of the Mustang in six cities across four continents. The iconic car will complete 50 years on Apr 17, 2014. Ford has sold over 9 million Mustang cars since its launch in 1964. The company now intends to introduce the car in various key markets in Europe and Asia.

Ford currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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