Microsoft Reorgs, Johnson Prunes Juniper CEO Post

    July 24, 2008
    WebProNews Staff

Another executive shuffle took place at Microsoft after Platform & Services Division president Kevin Johnson ditched the company in favor of the CEO role at Juniper Networks.

The man with responsibility for navigating the choppy waters of Microsoft’s battle with Google opted to head for the lifeboats. Long-time executive Johnson wrapped up 16 years with Microsoft and headed for network hardware maker Juniper.

Microsoft said in a statement Johnson’s old Division would be split into two groups: Windows/Windows Live and Online Services, both under CEO Steve Ballmer. A trio of senior vice presidents will head the Windows Live side.

As for Online Services, and the duty of trying to find a way to carve out some of Google’s share of the online search and advertising markets, Microsoft plans to create a new senior leadership role. Satya Nadella, currently running the search, ad, and MSN engineering efforts, apparently will stay in that position and report to the new lead.

Johnson held a prominent role over the past few months with regards to Microsoft’s failed attempt to acquire Yahoo. All Things D said he served as the point person for those negotiations, which ultimately ended with Yahoo signing a search advertising deal with Google.

All Things D also cited the internal memo from Ballmer to Microsoft regarding the latest reorganization, and Johnson’s departure. Ballmer told employees the Yahoo takeover attempts were “a tactic, not a strategy” to expand Microsoft’s search and advertising share.

“Search is the key to unlocking the enormous market opportunities in advertising, and it is an area that is ripe for innovation,” Ballmer said.