Eric Schmidt to Step Down as Alphabet's Executive Chairman

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Schmidt will retain a role as technical advisor to Alphabet, the listed holding company which Google is part of. He served as the company's CEO from August of that year through April 2011, when he became executive chairman of the board of directors at Google. Republicans have long accused the company of being too cozy with Democrats, and Schmidt's efforts to help Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGrassley blasts Democrats over unwillingness to probe Clinton GOP lawmakers cite new allegations of political bias in FBI Top intel Dem: Trump Jr. refused to answer questions about Trump Tower discussions with father MORE's presidential campaign a year ago did little to ease those suspicions.

No reason was provided for the change.

Mr Schmidt said that he, Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, as well as chief executive Sundar Pichai, "believe that the time is right in Alphabet's evolution for this transition". "The Alphabet structure is working well, and Google and the Other Bets are thriving", Schmidt said in a statement.

John Hennessy, a member of Alphabet's board since 2004, said: "Over 17 years, Eric has been tremendously effective and tireless in guiding our board, particularly as we restructured from Google to Alphabet".

Alphabet made the announcement in a press release this afternoon, touting Schmidt's vision and accomplishments throughout his 17-year tenure.

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Schmidt has been with Google since 2001. He also noted that he'd continue to be expanding his work in science and technology issues and philanthropy.

CNBC reports that Schmidt's new role will likely include advising "the company's urban development arm, Sidewalk Labs, its deep learning efforts, and its healthcare spin-offs, Verily and Calico".

Alphabet owns Google Search, Maps, Ads, Gmail, Android, Chrome and Youtube and has more than 70,000 employees.

Schmidt ranks among the world's richest people.

Alphabet shares ended Thursday 0.25% lower at $1,070.85.

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