Former Ford CEO Alan Mulally, who late last year was the apparent front-runner to replace Steve Ballmer as Microsoft CEO, has joined Google's board of directors.
Mulally, 68, officially joined Google July 9 and will hold a spot on the Mountain View, Calif.-based search and advertising vendor's Audit Committee. He revealed in May that he'd be retiring as Ford CEO July 1.
Google CEO Larry Page, in a statement, seemed barely able to contain his excitement over Mulally's appointment.
"Alan brings a wealth of proven business and technology leadership experience. I am so pleased that Alan is now joining Google’s board," Page said in the statement.
"I am honored to serve on the board of a global iconic company that is dedicated to enhancing our lives," Mulally said in a statement. "I look forward to working together with the Google board and management team to continue to deliver their compelling vision."
Last August, shortly after Ballmer revealed plans to step down as Microsoft CEO, Mulally emerged as the leading candidate to replace him. However, Mulally made several non-denial denials when asked if he'd talked with Microsoft about the job.
In January, after four months of nonstop rumors, Mulally officially withdrew himself from the running for the Microsoft CEO job, telling the Associated Press he had "no other plans to do anything other than serve Ford."
Mulally advised Ballmer on Microsoft's corporate reorganization last July, and as former CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes, was said to be interested in returning to the Seattle region, AllThingsD reported last August.
Mulally engineered a stunning turnaround at Ford after joining the troubled automaker in 2006, taking the company from a $12.6 billion loss that year to $6.6 billion in profit four years later.
Some investors felt Microsoft needed a turnaround artist like Mulally to reverse the company's fortunes. But several Microsoft partners told CRN last September they weren't thrilled about the idea of bringing in an executive from outside the technology industry to run the company.
PUBLISHED JULY 16, 2014