Who Is Sundar Pichai, Google's New CEO? His Promotion Could Mean Big Changes For The Tech Giant
Google dropped some big news on Monday, saying it will be entirely restructured under the name Alphabet. The new business will act as a parent company for Google and its various non-Internet related projects, including Calico and Life Sciences, which both focus on health efforts. Google CEO and co-founder Larry Page will run Alphabet, along with the other Google co-founder Sergey Brin. That means the tech giant, now "slimmed down," will get a new leader — so, who is Sundar Pichai, Google's new CEO?
Pichai, 43, previously served as Google's senior vice president in charge of product, essentially running the day-to-day operations of the company as Page's No. 2 man. Because the smaller companies that existed within Google Inc. will transition over to Alphabet, Google itself will shrink a bit when Pichai takes over and only focus on its Internet businesses.
In a blog post announcing the creation of Alphabet, Page lauded Sundar and was confident in his abilities: "I have been spending quite a bit of time with Sundar, helping him and the company in any way I can, and I will of course continue to do that. Google itself is also making all sorts of new products, and I know Sundar will always be focused on innovation — continuing to stretch boundaries. I know he deeply cares that we can continue to make big strides on our core mission to organize the world's information."
Pichai joined Google in 2004 as the vice president of product management, which put him in charge of Google Chrome and also eventually consumer products like Gadgets, Google Toolbar, and Desktop Search. In 2011, he was promoted to senior vice president of Google Chrome and Apps and led Google Drive, Maps, Gmail, Chrome OS, Android, and other projects.
One of Pichai's goals is to make the Internet and technology more accessible for everyone around the world with affordable devices and reliable networks. In an interview with The Verge, Pichai said: "At our core, we want to build products for everyone." According to Fortune, "He is universally well-liked at Google, where he seems to enjoy a 'warm, easygoing rapport' with Page."
Pichai is originally from the southern Indian state Tamil Nadu. He studied at the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur before moving to the United States to receive an M.S. from Stanford and an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business. Before he began his career at Google, Pichai worked in engineering and product management for Applied Materials Inc., a semiconductor manufacturer, and as a management consultant for McKinsey & Co., a multinational consulting firm.