Why Microsoft’s New CEO Satya Nadella Is Smart Bet

After a highly-anticipated executive search, Microsoft has picked insider Satya Nadella as CEO. He becomes the software giantEUs third-ever CEO.

Microsoft also announced that company co-founder Bill Gates, previously Chairman of the Board of Directors, will assume a new role on the board as "Founder and Technology Advisor," and will devote more time to the company, supporting Nadella in shaping technology and product direction. John Thompson will assume the role of chairman as well as continue in his current role as lead independent director for the board.

Nadella, who previously served as the senior vice president of Research and Development for MicrosoftEUs Online Services Division, said he is both honored and humbled to succeed Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer as the third CEO of Microsoft. The India native joined Microsoft 22 year ago, the company said, because he saw how clearly it empowers people to do magical things and ultimately make the world a better place.

EUOur industry does not respect tradition -- it only respects innovation,EU Nadella said. EUThe opportunity ahead for Microsoft is vast, but to seize it, we must move faster, focus and continue to transform. I see a big part of my job as accelerating our ability to bring innovative products to our customers more quickly.EU

Changing the World

Nadella started his career as a member of the technology staff at Sun Microsystems. In 1992, he joined Microsoft. He was on his way to getting a masterEUs degree in business when the Microsoft job offer came. The company was building an operating system that ultimately would be known as Windows NT, and needed team members who understood UNIX and 32-bit operating systems, he said. Nadella wanted to complete his masterEUs degree and take the Microsoft job. He did both.

Nadella came to Microsoft, he told employees in an e-mail, EUfor the...

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