Microsoft is shaking things up at senior level as it looks to “drive engineering alignment against the company’s core ambitions,” the company revealed this morning. And Stephen Elop, the former head of Nokia who joined Microsoft as an executive vice president with the acquisition of its devices and services division last year, has “retired” from Microsoft.

In an email circulated to staff, CEO Satya Nadella said that the company wants to “reinvent productivity and business processes, build the intelligent cloud platform, and create more personal computing.” Regarding Stephen Elop’s departure, Nadella wrote:

He has been a strong advocate of the need to drive focus and accountability around the delivery of these experiences and has helped drive tighter alignment toward the ambition of more personal computing. With the structural change described above, Stephen and I have agreed that now is the right time for him to retire from Microsoft.

The Devices and Services business unit that Elop headed up at Microsoft will now be called the “Windows and Devices Group (WDG),” bringing the engineering scope of its Operating Systems Group and Microsoft Devices Group (MDG) under one roof, which will be led by Terry Myerson. Myerson was formerly vice president of the Operating Systems arm.

In effect, Microsoft has merged its software and hardware divisions, which is clearly designed to create a greater synergy between its devices and Windows operating system. Indeed, with Windows 10 scheduled to launch at the end of July, Microsoft’s executive shake-up is timely.

“WDG will drive Windows as a service across devices of all types and build all of our Microsoft devices including Surface, HoloLens, Lumia, Surface Hub, Band and Xbox,” said Nadella. “This enables us to create new categories while generating enthusiasm and demand for Windows broadly.”

Microsoft’s 12-strong list of top executives are now as follows:

  • Satya Nadella, chief executive officer
  • Chris Capossela, executive vice president and chief marketing officer
  • Kurt DelBene, executive vice president, corporate strategy and planning
  • Scott Guthrie, executive vice president, cloud and enterprise
  • Amy Hood, executive vice president and chief financial officer
  • Kathleen Hogan, executive vice president, human resources
  • Peggy Johnson, executive vice president, business development
  • Qi Lu, executive vice president, Applications and Services Group
  • Terry Myerson, executive vice president, Windows and Devices Group
  • Harry Shum, executive vice president, technology and research
  • Brad Smith, executive vice president and general counsel, legal and corporate affairs
  • Kevin Turner, chief operating officer


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