Google has removed the CEO of its Nest unit, which makes internet-connected thermostats and other devices, and will fold the business into another team within the company. The shakeup is the latest strategic overhaul at Nest, which Google acquired for ...and more »
Google shakes up Nest leadership, melds into Google home devices unit - Business Insider
Nest CEO Marwan Fawaz
NestGoogle has removed Marwan Fawaz as CEO of Nest.
The Nest team will now be folded into Google's home devices division led by Rishi Chandra.
After generating a lot of attention when it was founded by Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers, Nest has all but disappeared as a standalone entity.
Google has removed the CEO of its Nest unit, which makes internet-connected thermostats and other devices, and will fold the business into another team within the company.
The shakeup is the latest strategic overhaul at Nest, which Google acquired for $3.2 billion in 2014 and was once considered one of the flagship standalone companies under the Alphabet umbrella organization.
Nest's founding CEO Tony Fadell was pushed out two years after the acquisition amid stinging criticism about his management style and the company's poor track record shipping products. Fadell was replaced by Marwan Fawaz, a cable industry veteran who was little know in Silicon Valley.
Now, almost exactly two years after Fawaz was tapped, he is being sidelined.
According to CNET, which first reported the news, the change at Nest came after Google received complaints from employees about Fawaz's leadership, which anonymous sources described as more of an "operations manager" than a leader.
Google representatives and Fawaz did not immediately respond to questions from Business Insider about the story.
The Nest team will be integrated into Google's home devices division under the leadership of Rishi Chandra, vice president of product management and general manager of home products.
"This is the natural evolution," Chandra told CNET. "We thought, let's connect these things and build experiences that we really couldn't do before."
Fawaz will remain with Google as an executive adviser and there will be no layoffs according to the report. Google will also keep the Nest brand. It was only six months ago that Nest operated as a separate division within Google's parent company Alphabet. Then Nest was folded into Google and now it appears that Nest as a standalone entity has all but vanished.
Update: Google issued a statement from Rick Osterloh, Google's SVP of hardware on Tuesday evening confirming the changes. "Marwan Fawaz is a strong CEO with a track record of operational excellence who led the integration planning efforts and was responsible for determining our organizational strategy. Marwan has done a remarkable job driving revenue growth, improving product quality, expanding the product portfolio and user satisfaction at Nest. Nest's employee retention and satisfaction has significantly improved over his time with the team. Unsourced comments suggesting otherwise are wrong. I am pleased to report that he will stay with us as an executive advisor for our hardware business, for Alphabet companies, and future strategic investments."
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