Bloomberg Retakes Helm as Namesake Company Faces Challenges

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Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is returning to lead the financial data and news company he founded in 1981, just eight months after leaving the mayor's office.

Bloomberg LP said current CEO and former deputy mayor Daniel Doctoroff will step down at the end of the year, clearing the way for Bloomberg to take back the helm of the company, of which he still owns more than 85 percent.

For years, Bloomberg insisted he had no intention of returning full-time to the company he founded, but an article in The New York Times says he's been taking an increasingly hands-on role in meetings and strategy decisions, and that Doctoroff had grown frustrated with how the leadership dynamic had shifted.

Fortune magazine editor-at-large Peter Elkind profiled Bloomberg LP in a story for the magazine. He said the company faces something of an identity crisis.

"[Bloomberg] had always been dependent on the incredible franchise of the financial terminal business, which is quite lucrative," said Elkind. 

Diversifying the company's portfolio was at the core of Doctoroff's strategy to transform the company. But once his old friend started showing up at the office every day, it became clear the company wasn't big enough for two CEO's.

"Philanthropy wasn't enough to keep [Bloomberg] busy," said Elkind. "He craves influence over public policy issues that he cares about like gun control and public health and he wouldn't have more influence than he could running the company."