Wed, Sep 11, 2013 - Page 15 News List

Microsoft shuffle said to cut two executives


Microsoft Corp is shuffling the management of its Windows division, a move that will leave longtime executives Jon DeVaan and Antoine Leblond without senior leadership roles, according to people with knowledge of the changes.

Terry Myerson, who runs Windows and Windows Phone, is reassigning executives in the newly joined software unit as part of Microsoft’s companywide restructuring, said the people, who asked not to be named because the moves have not been announced.

Henry Sanders, a Windows Phone executive, will lead development, while Joe Belfiore, also from Windows Phone, will run a phone, tablet and PC group, one of the people said.

Microsoft, the world’s largest software maker, is overhauling its top ranks as chief executive officer Steve Ballmer nears retirement.

Ballmer, who said last month he will leave within a year, in July rolled out the largest change to the company’s executive staff in more than a decade.

Those picked as unit leaders by Ballmer are now setting up their own leadership teams.

Leblond had been in charge of lining up applications for Windows 8, Microsoft’s new operating system, which was criticized for lacking some popular apps when it went on sale in October last year. More recently he worked on the Windows 8.1 update to the software.

DeVaan was a vice president in Windows development. It is not clear if the two will take on positions elsewhere in the company, stay in Windows or leave altogether, the people said.

Myerson, whose team also develops software for the Xbox and the Xbox Live online service, picked Xbox executive Marc Whitten to run those businesses, and Chris Jones will keep his current job overseeing Windows services, the people said.

To bolster its struggling mobile business, Microsoft agreed last week to buy Nokia Oyj’s handset business or US$7.2 billion, adding about 32,000 employees.

Microsoft will introduce new versions of its Surface tablet at an event in New York on Sept. 23, according to an invitation sent out by the company.

While there has been speculation the company might introduce a smaller Surface, no such device will be unveiled at the event, said a person familiar with the matter. Last quarter Microsoft took a US$900 million charge writedown on unsold Surface tablets.

The new products will include both a version for Intel Corp chips running Windows 8 and a version running Windows RT on an Nvdia Corp chip with ARM Holdings PLC technology, the person said.

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