News Column

Microsoft Launches Wide-ranging Reorg

July 11, 2013

Microsoft announced a sweeping corporate reorganization Thursday to better align the company with a tech landscape dominated by mobile devices and online services.

The software giant, built on the dominance of personal computers, said it would reorganize into fewer business units that would combine functions across major product areas to improve cooperation and product coordination.

"Going forward, our strategy will focus on creating a family of devices and services for individuals and businesses," Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer wrote in a memo to employees posted on Microsoft's website.

"To advance our strategy and execute more quickly, more efficiently and with greater excellence we need to transform how we organize, how we plan and how we work."

The reorganization comes as sales of PCs are on a downward spiral due to the popularity of smartphones, tablet computers and web services that are dominated by Microsoft's technology sector rivals including Apple, Google and Amazon.

The restructuring reduces the numbers of engineering units from eight to four, and is the biggest reorganization since Ballmer divided Microsoft into separate product units in 2002.

The reorganization creates a new cloud computing and business-focused products unit to be headed by Satya Nadella, who currently leads the company's server division.

Windows chief Julie Larson-Green will be placed in charge of all hardware efforts including the Xbox and Surface tablet computers, while online services leader Qi Lu will add Office and Skype to his portfolio, which already includes the Bing search service.

Windows Phone chief Terry Myerson will take over Windows and Xbox engineering while current Skype president Tony Bates will be given responsibility for all business development.

Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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