Qualcomm names Steve Mollenkopf as next CEO

Steve Mollenkopf, in August 2013.
EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images

SAN DIEGO - Qualcomm (QCOM) says that long-time executive Steve Mollenkopf will become its CEO in March.

Mollenkopf, who has served as president and chief operating officer since October 2011, was named as CEO elect and will join the mobile device chipmaker's board. He will continue to serve as Qualcomm's president and officially become CEO on March 4 after the company's annual meeting.

At that time, current CEO Paul Jacobs will become executive chairman and help guide development of new technology.

Mollenkopf has held a variety of jobs during his nearly 20 years at the company, including leading its chipset business where he helped Qualcomm become the world's largest mobile chipset supplier and a leader in higher speed mobile Internet technology.

Qualcomm Inc. shares rose 52 cents to $73.25 in premarket trading.  Its shares have risen more than 17 percent so far this year.