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Eric Schmidt stepping down as Alphabet executive chairman

Growing power of tech

Eric Schmidt is stepping down from his role as Alphabet's executive chairman to become a technical advis3r to the company, Alphabet announced Thursday. He will continue to serve on the board, the company said.

Schmidt, 62, joined the company in 2001, when he became CEO of a three-year-old startup called Google. In 2011, he became the company's executive chairman, a role he kept when Google restructured to become Alphabet (GOOGL) in 2015. 

The company will appoint a non-executive chairman, it said.  

"Larry, Sergey, Sundar and I all believe that the time is right in Alphabet's evolution for this transition," Schmidt said in a statement, referring to Google's co-founders Larry Page, who is Alphabet's CEO, and Sergey Brin, who is Alphabet's president, as well as Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google. "The Alphabet structure is working well, and Google and the Other Bets [that comprise Alphabet] are thriving. In recent years, I've been spending a lot of my time on science and technology issues, and philanthropy, and I plan to expand that work."

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