Larry Page just gave Sundar Pichai responsibility over all of Google's most important properties

Sundar Pichai, who runs Chrome, Android, and Google's apps business. Credit: Matt Rosoff

In a late-breaking story on Friday, Re/Code published a report relaying Google's corporate leadership structure was recently reorganized in a significant way. According to the report, Google CEO Larry Page is transferring a number of his responsibilities over to Sundar Pichai, a rising star at Google who took control over the company's Android team just this past March.

Before that, Pichai, who is reportedly very well respected within the company both for his technical acumen and judicious handling of intra-company politics, worked on Google Chrome. Now, a few years into his tenure at Google, Pichai's oversight will extend to include a "who's who" of Google properties, including Maps, Search, Google+, and more. From the Re/Code story:

The move seems born of Page’s concern — which is not new — that Google will become less innovative as it ages. In a memo to staff, he noted that the changes will create less of a bottleneck and also help him focus his attention on existing and new products. That said, he’ll continue to directly manage business and operations, including access and energy (a new unit run by Craig Barratt), Nest, Calico, Google X, corporate development, legal, finance and business (including ad sales).

Sources said Page has said in meetings with staff about the changes that he wants to focus on the “bigger picture” and is unable to do that with so many reports and a myriad of duties related to each product unit.

The idea that Page is concerned with Google getting too big for its own good is not new. Indeed, Page, upon assuming the CEO position at Google in 2011, took a number of steps designed to instill a bit more of a start-up culture within the company.

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