Google CEO Pichai joins Al­pha­bet board as founders show trust

Muscat Daily - - BUSINESS -

San Fran­cisco, US - Google’s chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Sun­dar Pichai is get­ting an­other role: Al­pha­bet board mem­ber. The ap­point­ment is an­other sig­nal of his ris­ing im­por­tance at the com­pany - and the trust the founders place in him.

Al­pha­bet Inc, the par­ent com­pany of the Web search gi­ant, added Pichai to its board of di­rec­tors on Mon­day. He joins the com­pany’s founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin; its chair­man, Eric Sch­midt; and nine other vet­er­ans of tech­nol­ogy, fi­nance and au­to­mo­tive in­dus­tries.

Out­side of Google, Al­pha­bet hosts sev­eral early stage com­pa­nies in a va­ri­ety of sec­tors, in­clud­ing its self-driv­ing car unit, Waymo, and two health­care ef­forts.

“Sun­dar has been do­ing a great job as Google’s CEO, driv­ing strong growth, part­ner­ships, and tremen­dous prod­uct in­no­va­tion,” Page said in a state­ment. “I re­ally en­joy work­ing with him and I’m ex­cited that he is join­ing the Al­pha­bet board.”

The move also re­solves a po- ten­tially awk­ward sit­u­a­tion: As CEO, Pichai was re­spon­si­ble for the Google Cloud busi­ness run by Diane Greene, but Greene also had over­sight of Pichai as an Al­pha­bet board mem­ber.

The In­dian-born ex­ec­u­tive took the reins of Google in Au­gust 2015, when Page an­nounced the Al­pha­bet re­struc­tur­ing. Pichai, who joined Google in 2004, gained at­ten­tion in­ter­nally lead­ing the Chrome busi­ness. Page placed him in charge of the An­droid mo­bile op­er­at­ing sys­tem, a key strate­gic as­set, in 2013. Pichai soon took over more prod­uct di­vi­sions as Page stepped fur­ther away from dayto-day man­age­ment of Google.

Since Pichai be­came CEO, he has shut­tled re­sources to­ward Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence re­search and Cloud com­put­ing while main­tain­ing steady growth of Google’s main ad­ver­tis­ing busi­ness. Dur­ing his ten­ure, Google’s stock has risen about 50 per cent. Al­pha­bet gave him US$199.7mn in com­pen­sa­tion in 2016.

Sun­dar Pichai

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