Microsoft Chief Product Officer Panay Exits

‘After 19 incredible years at Microsoft, I’ve decided to turn the page and write the next chapter,’ Panos Panay says.


Panos Panay

Panos Panay, Microsoft’s chief product officer and a 19-plus-year veteran of the tech giant, is leaving.

Panay confirmed his departure Monday in a post on social media network X, formerly known as Twitter.

“After 19 incredible years at Microsoft, I’ve decided to turn the page and write the next chapter,” he said. “I’m forever grateful for my time at Microsoft and the amazing people I had the honor to make products with.”

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Microsoft CPO Panay Out

In a statement shared with CRN, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella thanked Panay for his “impact on our products, culture, company, and industry over the past two decades.”

“I’m grateful for your leadership, support, and all you’ve done for Microsoft and our customers and partners,” Nadella said. “As Rajesh (Jha, executive vice president of Microsoft’s Experiences + Devices Group) stated, we remain steadfast and convicted in our strategy and Yusuf Mehdi will take lead on our Windows and Surface businesses and products externally.”

An internal email from Jha shared with CRN elaborates on the executive changes that come with Panay’s departure. Those changes include:

*Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice president and consumer chief marketing officer, will lead the Windows and Surface businesses with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and retail partners

*Pavan Davuluri, corporate vice president, Windows silicon and systems integration, will lead a team around silicon, systems and devices that span Windows, client and cloud for an AI world and continue to lead Windows planning and release management

*Mikhail Parakhin, CEO of advertising and web services will lead a new Windows and web experiences team

“Panos has had an incredible impact on our products and culture as well as the broader devices ecosystem,” Jha said in the email. “Under Panos’ leadership, the team created the iconic Surface brand with loved products. More recently, as the leader of Windows, the team has brought amazing services and experiences to hundreds of millions with Windows 11 on innovative devices including those from our OEM partners. He will be missed, and I am personally very grateful for his many contributions over the years. Please join me in wishing him well.”

Panay joined Microsoft in 2004 as group program manager for PC hardware, according to his profile on Microsoft-owned social media LinkedIn. He’s been in the chief product officer role since 2018.

Panay has played a role in some of Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft’s biggest product announcements over his tenure, including the Surface 2, Surface Pro 2, Surface Duo and Windows 11.

Panay indicated on X that he was going to be at a New York event centered on Microsoft AI. The Verge reports that he will not be at that event.

Although Panay did not post about his departure on LinkedIn, multiple Microsoft employees took to the platform to comment on his exit.

Mik Chernomordikov, Microsoft senior director for worldwide Windows partner and developer ecosystem, wrote that he is “forever” grateful “for the opportunity to work with Panos Panay in the last 2 years.”