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The Week We Searched For- Google’s New CEO

Posted on Friday, January 21st, 2011 by Print This Post Print This Post

Categories - Featured, News

Google announced on Thursday afternoon that co-founder Larry Page will replace Eric Schmidt as Google’s CEO in April. The announcement marks the end of Schmidt’s nearly decade-long leadership; a period during which the small start up grew into one of the most powerful corporate organizations in the world. The announcement also preceded another prosperous fourth quarter earnings report.

New Job Roles:

  • Larry Page: Google’s co-founder will take over as CEO on April 4, 2011. To date, Page has been the president of products.
  • Eric Schmidt: Schmidt will become Google’s executive chairman and focus on partnerships, government contracts and deals.
  • Sergey Brin: Brin will remain co-founder and president of technology and strategic projects.

Larry Page, 38, co-founded Google back in 1998 with fellow Stanford University PhD student Sergrey Brin. Young, idea-driven and inexperienced, Page and Brin brought on Eric Schmidt to be Google’s CEO in 2001 and act as their “day-to-day adult supervision.” [Schmidt tweeted on Thursday after the announcement, “Day-to-day adult supervision no longer needed!”].

Under Schmidt’s leadership, the company has had consistently strong financial results. Google reported $8.4 billion revenue for the 4th quarter, up 26% year over year. Net income surged from $1.94 billion ($6.13/share) to $2.54 billion ($7.71/share) in the past year, and is now valued at $8.09/share.

The reason for this executive change is clouded in mystery, although 10 years as the primary public figure of one of the world’s most iconic brands could have been enough for Schmidt.  Brin and Page have traditionally maintained very private personas, while Schmidt traditionally handled the public pronouncements.

Although still wildly prosperous, Google may be opting for a younger version of itself in order to compete with social media up-and-comers like Facebook and Groupon, which remain in part so hip, because they are run by twenty-something year olds and not tenured Silicone Valley CEOs. Under Schmidt’s leadership, Google has struggled to diversify, remaining heavily dependent on search advertisement. With the war for mobile advertisement raging and Facebook’s boding success, perhaps Google is going back to its roots and recreating itself as a, idea-driven organization.

What impact (if any) will this change will have on the future of Big G?  Do you think Page will be the CEO for the long term? Or is this an “interim” post until Google can recruit a new Chief Executive?

About Camille Canon

Outside of summer jobs and not-for-profit internships, The Search Agency is my first official place of employment. I recently graduated from Mount Holyoke College, where I studied Art History and German. I am an avid cook, baker, and destroyer of diets. My specialties are cream cheese brownies, biscotti cookies and lemon bars. I am also an Art enthusiast. Living in Berlin enables me to follow a young, emerging Art scene complete with “eccentric” performance pieces and temporarily converted butcher shop galleries. I also enjoy running, traveling, and handy work. Camille Canon +

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3 Responses to “The Week We Searched For- Google’s New CEO”

  1. Richard says:

    I don’t know enough about their leadership to comment about that but I’d like to see Google branch out beyond search, advertising, social media and smart phones to create something no one has thought about before. While they are dominant and do a lot of things well, they haven’t really created anything new in my opinion, but have always done things better than the competition.

  2. Barbara says:

    I think the timing and messaging is SO interesting on this announcement: the same week that Steve Jobs takes a medical leave of absence and not announcing where Eric will be going. Now granted, it is a big leap between buildings to think that the former CEO of Google would go to lead Apple, but when you read about Schmidt’s career long ‘battle’ with Microsoft, where best to wage war than at the top of their competitor. Wouldn’t it be interesting for Schmidt to lead Apple against Ballmer’s Microsoft.

    Based on nothing but timing and a love of technology drama….


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