By Stephen Schenck | February 4, 2014 10:32 AM
It’s a journey that started back in August of last year, as Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced his intention to step down from the position after serving as CEO since the year 2000: over the months that followed, we’ve been hearing all manner of rumors concerning who Microsoft would pick to fill those CEO shoes. Those have included names like Nokia’s Stephen Elop, Ford’s Alan Mulally, and most recently the surprising addition of Google’s Sundar Pichai. This morning Microsoft goes public with its decision, announcing Satya Nadella as the company’s third CEO.
Despite that late-stage shakeup with those Pichai rumors, Nadella found himself at the head of the rumor pack in late January, as sources already predicted he would emerge as Microsoft’s top pick. Nadella’s been with Microsoft for decades, and most recently has been at the forefront of its interests in cloud computing.
In his statement to Microsoft employees, Nadella outlines his goals for the company, and is clear about how important a focus on mobile devices is going forward, writing, “the opportunity ahead will require us to reimagine a lot of what we have done in the past for a mobile and cloud-first world, and do new things.”
We also get an update on the role Bill Gates will play at Microsoft, and similar to what rumors last month suggested, he’s going to be taking on new responsibilities. Gates will step down as Chairman of the Board and become the new Founder and Technology Advisor, a position that will mean Gates spending more time at Microsoft than in recent years past.