Microsoft has elected Satya Nadella as Chairman of the tech giant, the first in two decades when Microsoft’s chairman will also be its CEO.Bill Gates was the only other Chairman and CEO of Microsoft who stepped down as CEO in 2000. In this role as Chairman, Nadella will lead the work to set the agenda for the board, leveraging his deep understanding of the business to elevate the right strategic opportunities and identify key risks and mitigation approaches for the board’s review, the company said in a statement late on Wednesday.
Gates stepped down as chairman in 2014 and the board then elected John Thompson as independent chairman. Gates left the Microsoft board entirely last year to pursue his philanthropic ambitions. Microsoft also unanimously elected John Thompson as lead independent director, a role he held previously from 2012 to 2014. As lead independent director, Thompson will retain significant authority including providing input on behalf of the independent directors on board agendas, calling meetings of the independent directors, setting agendas for executive sessions, and leading performance evaluations of the CEO, Microsoft said. In addition to these role changes, the board declared a quarterly dividend of $0.56 per share.
Accolades and congratulatory messages poured in for Satya Nadella, who was elected as Microsoft Chairman even as he held the CEO post at the tech giant, a feat achieved first time in two decades.
J.C. Pavan Reddy, a Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader said the elevation of Nadella is a very proud moment for all the Telugu people across the globe. “Satya Nadella on his new role as Microsoft chairman! A very proud moment for Telugu people across the globe,” said Reddy on Friday. Earlier, TDP supremo and former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu echoed with a similar message. “Congratulations to Nadella on his new role as Microsoft chairman! A very proud moment for Telugu people across the globe.
Nadella met Naidu back in 2015 when he was the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh. Likewise, TDP national general secretary and the party’s second in command Nara Lokesh was elated to know about Nadella’s promotion. “Elated to hear that Nadella has been appointed as the chairman of Microsoft. He has made every Telugu proud with his stellar achievements,” said Lokesh. Congratulating the new MS chairman, Lokesh wished him all the best for his new role.
The new Microsoft chairman’s father, B.N. Yugandhar, was an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer and belonged to Anantapur district in the Rayalaseema region of the southern state. Nadella was born in Hyderabad (present-day Telangana) and earned bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Manipal Institute of Technology in Karnataka. “I always knew I wanted to build things,” he once said. On February 4, 2014, he was announced as the new CEO of Microsoft, the third CEO in the company’s history following Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer.
Under Nadella’s leadership, Microsoft has become one of the most valuable companies in the world, riding on its growing Azure Cloud, Microsoft 365 and enterprise communication businesses (including Teams). Microsoft reported a strong growth of $41.7 billion in sales (up 19 per cent year-over-year) and $15.5 billion in net income for the quarter ended March 31, 2021.
The biggest growth engine was its Azure Cloud division that saw $15.1 billion in revenue, a 23 per cent year-over-year increase. “Over a year into the pandemic, digital adoption curves aren’t slowing down. They’re accelerating, and it’s just the beginning. We are building the cloud for the next decade, expanding our addressable market and innovating across every layer of the tech stack to help our customers be resilient and transform,” Nadella had said. Driven by online work and learning amid the ongoing pandemic, Microsoft Teams now have 145 million daily active users globally, almost double the numbers a year ago. (IANS)