Ex-Google chief Eric Schmidt to step down from Alphabet board

Eric Schmidt will leave Alphabet's board in June after 18 years with Google and its parent company.

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After 18 years with Google, the search giant's former CEO, Eric Schmidt, is leaving the board of parent company Alphabet. 

Schmidt joined Google as chairman in 2001, before it was clear that online advertising would be the young search company's road to profits. Google at that stage hadn't delivered a profitable quarter.  

Schmidt won't be seeking re-election to Alphabet's board after his term expires on June 19, Alphabet announced yesterday as the company's shares took a battering over concerns that revenue growth from online advertising is slowing down, as per CNBC

The European Commission's $1.7bn antitrust fine also hurt the company's profits this quarter

SEE: IT pro's guide to GDPR compliance (free PDF)

Schmidt will continue as a technical adviser to Alphabet. The tech veteran served as Google's CEO from 2001 until 2011, when he gave way to Google co-founder Larry Page but remained as executive chairman and often was the public face of Google's leadership. Schmidt quit as executive chairman in January 2018.

As noted by the Financial Times, Schmidt has sold 70 percent of the shares he held in Google at the time of its 2014 public listing, and what remains is worth $5bn. 

Diane Greene, the former CEO of VMware who joined Google in 2015 to lead its cloud business, will not seek re-election to Alphabet's board when her term ends on June 19. Greene has been on Alphabet's board since 2012 and was replaced as head of Google Cloud earlier this year by former Oracle exec Thomas Kurian.  

Greene was in charge of Google Cloud amid the company's employee protests over its work for the Pentagon on Project Maven, which led to the company publishing a set of AI principles

Google's efforts to expand its AI principles through an advisory board fell apart earlier this month after employees objected to the inclusion of two members. 

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Ex-Google CEO Eric Schmidt won't be seeking re-election to Alphabet's board when his term expires on June 19.

Image: CBS/YouTube

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