In selecting Mr. Lu, who will become president of the money-losing online services group in January, Microsoft chose an executive with deep technical knowledge over others with more advertising and media experience. He will be leading the company’s challenge to Google, which dominates the search and online advertising businesses.
“Microsoft is trying to emulate Google in naming a technologist to head the online unit,” said Youssef Squali, an analyst with Jefferies & Company.
The choice of Qi Lu to run Microsoft’s online services division offers the clearest picture yet about Steve Ballmer’s vision for the company’s online effort. Its colors are blue, red, yellow and green and it is spelled G-O-O-G-L-E.
[edited by: Marcia at 6:16 am (utc) on Dec. 5, 2008]