Big Microsoft reorg news: Panos Panay to head both Windows client and hardware, Joe Belfiore to Office, Jeff Teper to lead Teams (updated)

Kip Kniskern

Panos Panay Surface Neo

Last week we got wind there may be some re-org news coming out of Redmond, and today Mary Jo Foley has the scoop, and there are some fairly significant changes.

Probably the biggest is that Surface guru Panos Panay will lead a new Devices + Windows team, effectively rolling up the Windows Experience (client) and the hardware teams. Panay has been leading hardware for some time, but will now lead Windows, once the kingpin of Microsoft’s businesses, too.

(update – Mary Jo Foley has acquired a part of Panay’s email to the troops, as follows:)

“Personally I’m very excited to lead the Windows Client for Microsoft, which will help us streamline our decision-making processes, be clear on our priorities, and deliver the best end user experiences from silicon through operating systems across all Microsoft apps and service connected devices (OEMs and Surface). We believe this will make the Windows Client experience better for the entire PC ecosystem. Designing hardware and software together will enable us to do a better job on our long term Windows bets (dual screen, silicon diversity, connectivity, app platform, etc.) and having a single point of Windows Client Experience leadership driving consistent priorities and resourcing across all of Windows client will help all of us accelerate innovation and improve execution. This is such an amazing time and opportunity to bring more energy to Windows and our customers using Windows. It won’t be easy, but extending our growth will be key for our company strategy.”

Joe Belfiore, who was leading Windows Experience, will be moving “to the Office side of the house,” according to Foley. The moves are set to take place on February 25th.

Belfiore and Ales Holecek will be leading the Office Experience Group (OXO) team as a product/engineering team. Belfiore will continue to lead EPIC (Essential Products Inclusive Community), which includes the mobile apps on Android and iOS and Microsoft News.

Windows “core,” or COSINE (Core OS and Intelligent Edge) will continue to fall under Azure Engineering, Panay is only taking the reins of the “experience” part of Windows.

There is plenty of other re-org news, as well. CVP Brian MacDonald, who has been heading up Teams, is retiring, and Jeff Teper will be adding Teams to his stable of OneDrive and SharePoint management duties. In addition, LinkedIn has announced leadership changes, too (via Thurrott): CEO Jeff Weiner will be moving to an “Executive Chairman” role with SVP of Product Ryan Roslansky taking over as CEO effective June 1st.

It’s clear that Microsoft is refining the way it looks at Windows, although less clear just where the world’s dominant OS is heading. Having Windows Experience and Devices under one roof should lead to some intensive tea leaf reading, although it’s not clear that much will change with the direction of Windows that isn’t already happening. Of course we’ll be keeping a close eye on all of the ramifications of these moves, so stay tuned to for all the latest.