According to Re/code, Sundar Pichai, the senior vice president at Google who used to be in charge of the Chrome, Android, and web apps teams now basically has control of almost every other Google product division of note. Search? Google+? Ads. Even the company’s infrastructure, all of that has been apparently moved off of CEO Larry Page’s plate and onto Pichai’s
Google sent a memo to staff about the move this afternoon, explaining the changes.
It’s a very big portfolio for one of Page’s senior product lieutenants and a fast-rising company executive. The highly respected Pichai will now have purview over research, search, maps, Google+, commerce and ad products and infrastructure. And he will continue to keep his existing responsibility for Android, Chrome and Google Apps. The six executives in charge of newly added product areas, all of whom previously reported directly to Page, will now report to Pichai.
The move seems born of Page’s concern — which is not new — that Google will become less innovative as it ages. In a memo to staff, he noted that the changes will create less of a bottleneck and also help him focus his attention on existing and new products. That said, he’ll continue to directly manage business and operations, including access and energy (a new unit run by Craig Barratt), Nest, Calico, Google X, corporate development, legal, finance and business (including ad sales).
Sources said Page has said in meetings with staff about the changes that he wants to focus on the “bigger picture” and is unable to do that with so many reports and a myriad of duties related to each product unit.