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Update: Microsoft taps Sinofsky to lead Windows business unit

The move comes two days after it announced some versions of Vista would be delayed

By Elizabeth Montalbano
March 23, 2006 12:00 PM ET

IDG News Service - As expected, Microsoft Corp. today announced that it has reshuffled its Platforms & Services Division, appointing Steve Sinofsky to lead a new group overseeing Windows operating systems and Windows Live services development.

The restructuring -- part of a plan by the vendor to repair what it called a lack of agility and growth in the division that oversees its largest property, Windows -- also breaks up and renames groups that were formerly a part of the MSN division.

Kevin Johnson, co-president of the platforms and services division, announced the changes in an e-mail to his division. The group now overseen by Sinofsky -- the Windows and Windows Live Group -- is one of eight that now comprise the division, according to Microsoft.

The other groups are Windows Live platform group, led by Blake Irving, corporate vice president; the online business group, led by David Cole, senior vice president; the market expansion group, led by Will Poole, senior vice president; the core operating system division, led by Brian Valentine, senior vice president; the Windows client marketing group, led by Mike Sievert, corporate vice president; the developer and platform evangelism group, led by Sanjay Parthasarathy, corporate vice president; and the server and tools business group, led by Bob Muglia, senior vice president.

The management change comes only days after the company said it planned to delay the consumer launch of the new Windows until after this year's holiday shopping season (see "Update: Microsoft Delays Consumer Release of Vista to January 2007").

Sinofsky joined Microsoft in 1989 as a software design engineer and had been with the Office team since its formation in 1994, first serving as the director of program management for that group. He developed a reputation as a no-nonsense taskmaster during his time at the Office business by consistently meeting deadlines and rolling out new products on a regular schedule, company-watchers say.

The new Windows and Windows Live group includes the Windows engineering team as well as development for the Windows Live online services Microsoft launched in November. Also new are both the Windows Live platform group and the market expansion group, while Cole's online business group replaces the division that once was MSN, according to Microsoft.

The online business group includes advertising sales, business development and marketing for Live platforms, Windows Live and all of the MSN properties, including MSN.com, MSNTV and MSN Internet Access. Microsoft's MSN division has suffered from lack of growth and an identity crisis, especially after Microsoft announced its set of Web-based services under the Live brand in November.

Reprinted with permission from IDG.net. Story copyright 2014 International Data Group. All rights reserved.
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