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Satya Nadella Congratulates Google's New CEO Sundar Pichai

Google has a new CEO and that's significant news for the company, its competitors, partners and those who use its wide array of offerings -- consumers and businesses alike. So it's hardly surprising that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was among those who yesterday reached out to Sundar Pichai, who was unexpectedly named to run Google as part of the largest restructuring in the company's history, via Twitter: "Congrats @sundarpichai well deserved!"

Through that massive company reorg, Google becomes the largest of several subsidiaries that will fall under a new corporate holding unit called Alphabet, which will be led by former Google CEO Larry Page and President Sergey Brin, both of whom are also cofounders. The surprising development appears to be aimed at allowing Page and Brin to focus on new and emerging businesses and creating a new financial reporting structure.

Page described Pichai as a natural choice to lead Google. Pichai, who most recently headed all product development and engineering for the company, is responsible for the development of the Chrome browser and had recently headed up the Android mobile division. "I know Sundar will always be focused on innovation -- continuing to stretch boundaries," Page said in yesterday's announcement. "I know he deeply cares that we can continue to make big strides on our core mission to organize the world's information."

Nadella and Pichai share a common heritage as they both are from India and Pichai's name was among dozens of outsiders rumored for the Microsoft CEO job when the company was searching for a replacement for Steve Ballmer.

When Page named him to replace Andy Rubin to head the Android business two years ago, Page described him in a blog post at the time as someone who has a "talent for creating products that are technically excellent yet easy to use -- and he loves a big bet," as pointed out by The New York Times.

Nadella and Pichai share something else in common: they're both only the third CEOs of their respective companies, though Microsoft is quite older than Google. Pichai's challenge is to lead Google so it can age gracefully -- and with fewer bumps in the road than Microsoft, Apple and others have traveled.

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 08/11/2015 at 11:28 AM


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