/// PageYank: As New SVPs Are Born at Google in CEO Reorg, What Happens to the Old Ones? [Digital Daily]

April 8, 2011  |  All Things Digital


Things are sure shaking over at Google, since the sudden departure on Monday of Jonathan Rosenberg , Google’s head of product management and one of its most senior executives. While his exit was portrayed as friendly all around, sources with knowledge of the dicey situation said that was definitely not the case. Instead, moving aside Rosenberg was newly installed CEO and Co-founder Larry Page’s first parry at remaking the search giant in his own image. Moving management chairs around is one of the tried-and-true way new leaders often try to effect that kind of dramatic change and several sources said Page has been tossing them about rather than just rearranging them. That was certainly clear in last night’s knighting of six new SVP titles upon a group of execs, all very close to Page. The promoted in new business units: Sundar Pichai, SVP of Chrome; Vic Gundotra, SVP of social; Andy Rubin SVP of mobile; Salar Kamangar SVP of YouTube and video; Alan Eustace SVP of search; Susan Wojcicki SVP of ads. Of them, Eustace was previously an SVP, in charge of engineering and research, and Wojcicki had recently held the title SVP of product management. It’s all the next step in Page’s overhauling the company’s management structure , as I reported in this column earlier this week was in the works. As I wrote: The main theme that seems to be emerging: An elimination of Google’s more centralized functional structure–where Rosenberg was one of several manager kingpins–to one in which the individual business units and their engineers, such as its most independent Android division, rule more autonomously. Reimagined like this, Google would become an ambidextrous organization with more powerful unit line execs, mostly engineers, doing what needs to be done to succeed, less burdened by the need to vet every little effort through various managers of Google’s powerful operating committee. This, of course, brings into focus that fates of several other SVPs on the formal management structure list on Google’s Web site and still serving on that OC. Leaving Eustace off, since he has a new SVP title, they are: Nikesh Arora, SVP and Chief Business Officer; David Drummond SVP, Corporate Development, and Chief Legal Officer; Shona Brown, SVP, Business Operations; and Patrick Pichette, SVP and Chief Financial Officer. How their roles evolve or do not–all might stay as is, of course–will be the next interesting part of what I am calling PageYank: Nikesh Arora : In a widely read column earlier this week, investing gadfly Eric Jackson argued that Arora is probably the most vulnerable of all the senior executives at the company. The high-profile Arora is well known both inside and outside the company as both highly ambitious and consistently pugnacious. While that is not necessarily a bad thing to be, that style has garnered him some criticism and he is often referred to as “Darth Vader” among detractors (and even some supporters). Still, Arora has been a consistent producer of results over his tenure, which might be all that matters. In fact, it might also make him an attractive candidate for a CEO job outside Google. But, perhaps most important right now though, is that Arora is “definitely not part of Larry’s inner circle,” said one source, adding “and that’s a very important place to be right now.” Incidentally, that inner circle currently seems to consist of many of those promoted last night–Kamangar, Rubin, Pichai and Gundotra–as well as search leads Udi Manber and Amit Singhal and, of course, Co-founder Sergey Brin. And not , it seems, Arora

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PageYank: As New SVPs Are Born at Google in CEO Reorg, What Happens to the Old Ones? [Digital Daily]


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