IBM taps Palmisano to take over as CEO

IBM Corp.’s board of directors Tuesday officially tapped Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Louis Gerstner’s longtime heir apparent, Samuel Palmisano, as the company’s next CEO.

Effective March 1, Palmisano will succeed Gerstner, who will remain chairman of IBM through the end of 2002, the company announced Tuesday. Palmisano, currently IBM’s president and chief operating officer, will remain president.

IBM also said its vice chairman, John Thompson, will retire from the company and the board on Sept. 1.

(More to follow.)