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Microsoft Losing Two Top Talents

Jeff Raikes, one of the Microsoft execs with the most years under his belt (and one of the nicest business leaders you'll ever meet), is retiring this fall.

Originally from Apple, Raikes has done nearly everything in his 27-some years at Microsoft. Most recently, Raikes drove the Office System business, especially the collaboration tools that run on top of Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Whenever a big-time executives leaves, rumors fly about whether they were forced out. I don't sit in on Microsoft's board meetings, but I'd venture to guess that the decision was all Raikes'. First, he's not leaving for nine months. Second, Raikes recently took the lead in launching Microsoft's Unified Communications line, which is off to a good start. And third, Raikes, part owner of the Seattle Mariners, is pretty much free to do whatever he wants!

Meanwhile, the man who drove Microsoft's acquisitions for the last two years is retiring next month. Bruce Jaffe, who helped Microsoft spend billions buying everything from Desktop Standard to aQuantive, started with Microsoft 12 years ago in the corporate strategy group.

Posted by Doug Barney on January 14, 2008 at 11:52 AM


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