Microsoft's new CEO is unlikely to be named this month, according to reports on Wednesday suggesting Bill Gates is in no hurry to announce the new face of the company.

Re/code's well-connected Kara Swisher claims the Microsoft chairman is leading the search to find Steve Ballmer's replacement, but a busy January for his Foundation makes an imminent decision unlikely.

"This is a Gates search, even though the board is very involved," a source told Swisher. "But nothing is going to happen without him, especially since he will be much more involved in the company going forward."

Gates' January commitments include key communications from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, plus his attendance at a global conference in Switzerland. Microsoft's quarterly financial results will also be announced on January 23, leaving Gates little time to focus on the selection or naming of the new CEO.

Ford boss out of the running

Meanwhile, one name you can cross off the list is current Ford CEO Alan Mulally, who has officially ruled himself out of the running to succeed Ballmer.

Mulally, thought to be among a handful of top candidates under consideration said on Wednesday: "I would like to end the Microsoft speculation because I have no other plans to do anything other than serve Ford. You don't have to worry about me leaving."

Are all roads leading to Stephen Elop? Could the man who oversaw Nokia's fall from grace really be sitting in the big chair at the world's biggest software company within months?

It would be brave to bet against that now, although internal candidates Londoner Tony Bates, Kevin Turner and Satya Nadella are also thought to be in with a shout. Who would you pick? Let us know in the comments section below.

Via TechCrunch