Microsoft’s product chief, Panos Panay, is set to depart from the technology giant, as announced by Rajesh Jha, the executive vice president, to employees on Monday. Panay is reportedly being hired by Amazon to oversee its hardware business.
The move comes after Dave Limp, the longtime Amazon hardware chief, announced his plans to retire from the company before the end of the year. Panay’s appointment at Amazon is seen as a strategic move to bolster the company’s hardware efforts, particularly in the face of slowing growth and increased competition in the smart speaker market.
Panay has led Microsoft’s Windows team and played a key role in the company’s hardware push with its computer landscape. He began his journey at Microsoft as a group program manager, climbing the corporate ladder to assume the pivotal role of Chief Product Officer in 2018, spearheading the development of the much-anticipated Windows 11.
Fast-forward to 2021 and Panos Panay earned a significant career milestone by securing a promotion to the prestigious position of Executive Vice President. This role positioned him squarely within Microsoft’s upper echelons of leadership, working closely with the company’s Chairman and CEO, Satya Nadella.
Microsoft has chosen Yusuf Mehdi, currently holding the title of Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President for Modern Life, Search and Devices, to step into Panay’s shoes as the new head of the Windows and Surface businesses.
The news of Panay’s departure comes ahead of Amazon’s annual new devices event, which takes place on Wednesday at its expanding campus in Arlington, Virginia.
The company has faced challenges in recent times, including layoffs last year and discontinuation of certain projects.