Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt is stepping down as Alphabet's executive chairman

23 December, 2017, 02:03 | Author: Tina Rodriquez
  • Bryan Bedder  Getty Images for The New York Times

Alphabet is all set to have a new face to take up the role of Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors now that Eric Schmidt has announced his retirement from the position.

Page took back the reins as CEO in 2011, and Schmidt issued a statement that read, "The Alphabet structure is working well, and Google and the other bets are thriving".

Here's a look at Schmidt's 17 years with Google and Alphabet. He also said that he will be putting a larger focus on science, technology and philanthropy moving forward.

Google was founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin as an internet search company.

It is certainly an end of an era.

Prior to joining Google, Schmidt was CEO of software company Novell.

It said in a statement on Thursday that Schmidt will become a technical adviser to the company while continuing to serve on its board, Xinhua news agency reported. He then became executive chairman of Alphabet in 2015 when Google made a decision to become just one of many businesses in Page and Brin's toybox. "I'm incredible excited about the progress our companies are making, and about the strong leaders who are driving that innovation". Schmidt joked he provided the "adult supervision" to the Google team. The business will join Apple and Microsoft who are both huge companies with a non-executive chairman. During President Barack Obama's administration, Schmidt, who has supported many Democratic politicians, prominently represented Google on policy matters.

"Over 17 years, Eric has been tremendously effective and tireless in guiding our Board, particularly as we restructured from Google to Alphabet".

The group also owns the Other Bets unit, which includes the Waymo driverless auto business and the Project Loon WiFi-enabled weather balloon venture.

Some gaffes by Schmidt over the years have also received attention.

Ultimately, this move could help Google's public image.

In a 2009 interview on CNBC, for instance, Schmidt said something about Google users' concerns about privacy that still haunts the company today: "If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place".

The company is also in the midst of a nightmare with the European Commission.



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