Microsoft adds its gaming chief to its Senior Leadership Team

Microsoft's Phil Spencer, now an executive vice president, is becoming part of the company's inner circle of advisers, in a move signaling the growing importance of gaming to the company.

Microsoft is adding another of its executives to its Senior Leadership Team (SLT) of top internal advisers in a move that indicates gaming is increasingly important to the future of the company.

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is informing employees today, Sept. 19, that Phil Spencer -- who is now executive vice president of gaming at Microsoft -- to the SLT. Microsoft's SLT now has 16 members, including Nadella.

During his time at Microsoft, Spencer has been the head of Xbox, Microsoft Studios, and Game Studios before being named executive vice president today. Spencer is in charge of leading Microsoft's gaming business across all devices and services. The gaming organization is still part of Microsoft's Windows and Devices unit.

Microsoft has been looking to gaming as one of its main ways to help monetize Windows. Some of the company's new initiatives, like HoloLens and mixed reality, as well as the "3D for Everyone" focus of the Windows team, are linked tightly to what Microsoft is doing in gaming.

Nadella also announced today that Microsoft's Enterprise Mobility and Security (EMS) team is moving from the Cloud and Enterprise unit to Windows and Devices. The new team will be known as the Enterprise Mobility and Management team and continue to be headed by Corporate Vice President Brad Anderson, who will be reporting to Windows and Devices chief Terry Myerson.

Microsoft is more tightly integrating management and security offerings with Windows, as indicated by the company's recently announced Microsoft 365 bundles. However, the Enterprise Mobiity and Management team will also continue to provide software and services that work with non-Windows platforms, as well.

Both of these organizational changes will be effective immediately.

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