Larry Page and Sergey Brin Step Away From Day-to-Day Operations at Alphabet, Announce Sundar Pichai Will Be CEO of Alphabet and Google

Larry Page and Sergey Brin:

Today, in 2019, if the company was a person, it would be a young adult of 21 and it would be time to leave the roost. While it has been a tremendous privilege to be deeply involved in the day-to-day management of the company for so long, we believe it’s time to assume the role of proud parents — offering advice and love, but not daily nagging!

With Alphabet now well-established, and Google and the Other Bets operating effectively as independent companies, it’s the natural time to simplify our management structure. We’ve never been ones to hold on to management roles when we think there’s a better way to run the company. And Alphabet and Google no longer need two CEOs and a President. Going forward, Sundar will be the CEO of both Google and Alphabet. He will be the executive responsible and accountable for leading Google, and managing Alphabet’s investment in our portfolio of Other Bets. We are deeply committed to Google and Alphabet for the long term, and will remain actively involved as Board members, shareholders and co-founders. In addition, we plan to continue talking with Sundar regularly, especially on topics we’re passionate about!

This seems like huge news — and I suppose it inherently is a big deal for co-founders to step back from their company — but it does not mean that Brin and Page won’t be involved in Alphabet’s direction. This announcement contains nothing about the co-founders’ holding of unique shares that give them extraordinary control over the company. It also doesn’t clarify why the Alphabet holding company was created, what purpose it serves now, and why it needs to be distinct from Google.