Microsoft Reorgs Around .NET Initiative

Microsoft Corp. this week shuffled its top executives around for the third time in the last 18 months, in a move suggesting it is serious about the .NET initiative.

Microsoft unveiled its long-awaited .NET initiative in June to extend its platform from its current base of servers, PCs and wireless devices to include Internet services hosted by Microsoft or third-party providers.

Microsoft president and CEO Steve Ballmer has called .NET a "bet the company" undertaking, although it is unclear where .NET will stand if the government chops Microsoft in half.

Big players in .NET, under the realignment, will include Rick Belluzzo, Bob Muglia, Jim Allchin, Paul Maritz, Jeff Raikes, David Cole, Brian MacDonald, Kai-Fu Lee and Paul Flessner.

Names of the four core product groups remain similar to what they were or became in the December 1999 reorganization. The Developer Group stays the same. The Platforms Group becomes the Platforms Product Group, and the Business Productivity Group is now the Productivity and Business Services Group. The Consumer Group, however, expands to the Personal Services and Devices Group (PSDG).

Belluzzo, who joined Microsoft last year from SGI, continues to amass a personal empire within Microsoft. Belluzzo started in September 1999 as group vice president of a precursor to the Consumer Group with five reports, including executives running, the television services and platform business and Expedia. In the December reorganization, Belluzzo picked up another two vice presidential level reports.

This time around, Belluzzo gets Bob Muglia, formerly group vice president of the Business Productivity Group and equal to Belluzzo on the old org chart, as a report.

Muglia takes on the high-profile position of group vice president of the new .NET Services Group, a department of great personal interest to Bill Gates.

Muglia will oversee David Cole, senior vice president of the Personal Services Platform Division; Brian MacDonald, senior vice president of the Subscription Service Division; and Kai-Fu Lee, who is in charge of the User Interface Technologies Division.

Jeff Raikes returns to the product side to fill in on Muglia’s previous post, group vice president, of the business productivity group. Raikes moves into the job after running the worldwide Sales, Marketing and Services Group. Raikes was the original vice president of Office Systems, and now will help turn Office into Office.NET.

Jim Allchin, whose current sabbatical was widely reported as a graceful exit, will stick around to continue to run the platforms group, which will include the transformation of Windows into Windows.NET.

Paul Flessner, promoted to vice president of SQL Server last December, continues his rise with a new position as senior vice president for the .NET Enterprise Server Division. Flessner is now in charge of seven enterprise server product launches this year: Exchange 2000 Server, SQL Server 2000, BizTalk Server 2000, Application Center 2000, Host Integration Server 2000, Commerce Server 2000, and Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2000. – Scott Bekker

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.