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Chief Product Officer Panos Panay Departing Microsoft

Microsoft has announced a handful of organizational changes, including Yusuf Mehdi stepping into Panay's vacated role.

After 19 years with Microsoft, Chief Product Officer Panos Panay will be leaving the company.

Panay, who led the charge for Microsoft's Surface line, announced he would be stepping away from the company in a tweet.

Panay joined the company in 2004 as the group program manager of PC hardware, and was instrumental in the creation and rise of Microsoft's Surface line of tablet/laptop hybrid devices.  In 2018, he was promoted to his current chief product officer role, and has been a staple of Microsoft's product events and conferences for years. In fact, he was previously scheduled to appear during the company's upcoming Surface and A.I. live event on Thursday before Monday's departure announcement.

"Panos has had an incredible impact on our products and culture as well as the broader devices ecosystem," wrote Microsoft Executive Vice President Rajesh Jha, in an internal email to employees. "Under Panos’ leadership, the team created the iconic Surface brand with loved products. More recently, as the leader of Windows, the team has brought amazing services and experiences to hundreds of millions with Windows 11 on innovative devices including those from our OEM partners."

Stepping in to the newly vacated role will be Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice president and consumer chief marketing officer at Microsoft, who has been recently the main driver behind Microsoft Bing and its generative A.I. integration.

"Thank you, Panos, for your impact on our products, culture, company, and industry over the past two decades," said CEO Satya Nadella, in a statement. "I'm grateful for your leadership, support, and all you've done for Microsoft and our customers and partners. As Rajesh stated, we remain steadfast and convicted in our strategy and Yusuf Mehdi will take lead on our Windows and Surface businesses and products externally."

Microsoft also announced additional organizational changes, including Microsoft VP Pavan Davuluri to step into leading Microsoft's chip engineering efforts, and advertising CEO Mikhail Parakhin will lead a new Windows and Web Experiences team.

About the Author

Chris Paoli (@ChrisPaoli5) is the associate editor for Converge360.

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