updated 05:51 pm EST, Mon March 3, 2014
Nadella calls leadership consolidation 'go-forward approach'
Adding to a previous shuffle, Microsoft has made public a pair of high-profile executive departures as new CEO Satya Nadella takes the helm of the company. Tony Bates, the ex-CEO of Skype, and Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President of Marketing Tami Reller will be "pursuing other interests outside the company."
Bates was hired as CEO of Skype in October 2010. Under Bates' leadership, Skype had grown the monthly user base to 170 million connected users per month. When Skype was officially acquired by Microsoft for $8.5 billion in May 2011, Bates announced that he wanted to eventually reach one billion connected users on Skype. As the president of the Skype Division, Bates focused on extending Skype's reach across key Microsoft products like Internet Explorer, Bing, Windows 8, Windows Phone, Outloo, and most recently by upgrading Windows Live Messenger with Skype. Bates was reportedly in the running for the CEO position.
After starting her career as a receptionist for Great Plains in 1984, Reller most recently served as Head of Marketing of Microsoft since June 2004, and has 23 years of experience in the business applications software industry. Reller earned her MBA from St. Mary's College in Moraga, CA, and her bachelor's degree in Mathematics from Minnesota State University Moorhead.
From the Microsoft memo detailing the changes, "Eric Rudder will serve as interim leader responsible for Business Development and Evangelism," taking over for Bates. Chris Capossella will assume Reller's duties, and report directly to Nadella.