Microsoft Devices and Studios executive vice-president Julie Larson-Green has announced her intention to move out of the role ahead of new incumbent Stephen Elop’s arrival.
Larson-Green announced the change in an exit memo published in full by TechCrunch.
Larson-Green held the role for seven months and oversaw the launch of the Xbox One, the Surface 2 family, and Xbox Music and Video, among other products and services. She will be transitioning to chief experience officer of the My Life & Work team in Microsoft’s Applications and Services Group. The change is a sidestep, not a demotion; had she remained in the Devices and Studios role, she would have had to report to Elop, putting her two steps down from CEO, rather than one.
Microsoft has named former Nokia CEO Elop as her replacement, as part of the deal in which the platform holder acquired Nokia’s device business wholesale.
Larson-Green will continue to lead the hardware-focused team until the Nokia deal closes and Elop is brought back into Microsoft’s family; he served as president of Microsoft’s Business Division before moving to Nokia.
Although Elop’s stint at Nokia was notable for the company’s downturn, it did include the sale to Microsoft, which liberated the former mobile-focused company from its increasingly unproductive devices division, likely to its benefit as it refocuses on location services.
Microsoft is pretty keen on Elop; he was tipped as a possible replacement for Steve Ballmer.