Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin have announced that they are stepping down from the leadership role of the parent company Alphabet.
The duo has been away from the spotlight for a long time, working on abstruse long-term projects like internet-delivery balloons (Loon) and self-driving cars (Waymo).
Four years ago, Page completely reorganised Google and turned it into a subsidiary of a larger holding company — today called Alphabet. Google’s reigns were handed over to engineer-turned administrator Sundar Pichai while Page officially headed Alphabet.
Pichai now has an even bigger job as Page and his co-founder, Alphabet President Sergey Brin, announced they would be stepping down. He will now be the CEO of the entire company, not just Google.
“While it has been a tremendous privilege to be deeply involved in the day-to-day management of the company for so long, we believe it’s time to assume the role of proud parents offering advice and love, but not daily nagging!” Page and Brin wrote in a blog post on Tuesday.
The last time Page was seen at an event was in 2013 at Google I/O. Page’s voice has been impaired for years because of a chronic condition, but his health did not play a role in the decision to step aside, the statement said. The two co-founders will continue to be an employee of Alphabet and retain their board seats. But, will not be looking after day-to-day operations and of the parent company.
Pichai has a gentle personality and he gets along with both, engineers as well as non-engineers. The company is filled with nerds and Pichai can relate with the creators and marketers. He’s spent 15 years at the company and understands its core values.
In fact, under Pichai’s leadership, Google’s stock has pretty much doubled along with revenues. The company made massive strides with artificial intelligence and expanded its reach to hardware. In the statement, Pichai has also made it clear that the transition will not affect the Alphabet structure or routine workflow.
While publicly stepping back, the co-founders still control more than 51% of the company’s shares. According to the latest fillings, Page held 26.1% of Alphabet’s total voting power, Brin 25.25% and Pichai less than 1%.