Google Hires 5 Key Execs From AWS, Microsoft: Here’s Who

Google recently hired a former Microsoft President and AWS’ machine learning general manager. Here’s five big executives Google nabbed with top notch experience at Amazon and Microsoft.

Google has recently hired five former presidents, vice presidents and general managers from rivals Microsoft and Amazon Web Services as Google Cloud looks to win more cloud market share.

From Microsoft’s former corporate vice president of global sales and strategic partnerships to AWS’ former general manager of machine learning—Google has recently nabbed several big-time executives with the goal of elevating the company’s cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) positions.

Google, Microsoft and AWS are the world’s three top cloud computing companies. Combined, these three technology giants won approximately 65 percent share of the $63 billion global cloud services market in the first quarter of 2023. The companies also compete heavily across the IT spectrum, including software, channel partner mindshare and in the red-hot generative AI market.

[Related: Amazon’s AWS Q2 Earnings Preview: Cloud Sales, Profit And AI]

Google Cloud’s Record $8 Billion Quarter

Before jumping into those recent hires, it’s key to note Google Cloud reported a successful second quarter 2023 financial earnings last week.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based cloud company generated a record $8.03 billion in revenue during Q2 2023, representing a sales increase of 28 percent year over year. Google Cloud generated an operating income of $395 million compared to an operating loss of $590 million in Q2 2022. This means Google Cloud improved its operating income by nearly $1 billion year over year.

Microsoft reports Azure and other cloud services sales figures inside its Intelligent Cloud business group, without providing specific cloud revenue data. Microsoft’s Intelligent Cloud business generated total sales of $24 billion during the quarter, representing an increase of 15 percent year over year. Amazon is set to report its AWS Q2 2023 financial earnings results on Aug. 3.

Here are the five biggest executive hires from Google over the past several months.

James Phillips

Google Title: Vice President, Google Cloud

Previous Title: President, Microsoft

James Phillips spent 10 years at Microsoft, including in a president role from 2020 to 2022, before joining Google Cloud in July. His teams built and operated a large portion of the Microsoft Cloud including the Dynamics 365, Power Platform, Azure AI Platform, Azure Data Platform, Azure IoT Platform, and the Microsoft Cloud for product families.

“I’m grateful for the warm welcome from Thomas Kurian and all my new colleagues. And with so many former colleagues who’ve joined before me, it feels a bit like a homecoming,” said Phillips on LinkedIn last week. “The depth of talent here is staggering—across every discipline; and the energy and momentum is palpable and contagious.”

From 2012 to 2022 Phillips’ Microsoft organization grew from 300 to over 15,000 team members spanning the globe and delivering over $20 billion in annual revenue. Phillips was the co-founder and former CEO of Couchbase before joining Microsoft.

Philips is now in a senior executive position as vice president of Google Cloud. “For the foreseeable future, transformation will be all about information and AI,” he said. “And at its very core that’s what Google is all about.”

Danny Lange

Google Title: Vice President of AI And BI

Previous Title: General Manager, AWS Machine Learning

Danny Lange has a stellar IT resume around machine learning and AI by working in top executive positions for the likes of Microsoft, Unity Technologies and AWS. He joined Google as vice president of artificial intelligence (AI) and business intelligence (BI), responsible for empowering customer transformation through the synergy of AI and BI.

“I have always believed in the transformative power of AI and BI to solve complex problems. At Google, I will strive to leverage these technologies to create impactful solutions that will benefit people all over the world,” said Lange in a LinkedIn post last month.

Lange was general manager of Amazon Machine Learning in AWS, helping to evolve the way services, applications and devices are created. “At Amazon, I led the management of the in-house Machine Learning platform (EML) and spearheaded the launch of Amazon Machine Learning for AWS. This cutting-edge technology continues to give Amazon a competitive edge in the industry,” said Lange on LinkedIn.

Lange spent more than eight years at Microsoft from 2005 to 2014. He was the engineering leader for machine learning and big data analytics at Microsoft, responsible for creating a portfolio of scalable next-generation analytical and ML algorithms for cloud services.

He spent six years at Unity Technologies as senior vice president of AI, before joining Google in June 2023.

Tara Brady

Google Title: President of EMEA for Google Cloud

Previous Title: Corporate Vice President of Global Sales and Strategic Partnerships, Microsoft

Tara Brady was one of Google Cloud’s biggest overseas hires this year as the company’s new president of for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). He’s now responsible for heading Google Cloud’s go-to-market teams in the region which includes sales, consulting, and its partner ecosystem.

Prior to joining Google, Brady was Microsoft’s corporate vice president of global sales and strategic partnerships for nearly two years. He was responsible for Microsoft’s worldwide sales teams and partnerships with ISVs and channel partners.

Brady’s stellar IT career includes an eight-year sting at solution provider giant Accenture. He was Accenture’s CEO of Australia and New Zealand from 2020 until he left for Microsoft in 2021. Brady was also the CEO of UK-based tech companies Calyx Manage

Nathan Thomas

Google Title: Senior Director of Product Management for Storage

Previous Title: General Manger, AWS Storage

Thomas is a 12-year AWS veteran who recently joined Google as senior director of product management for storage. Google Cloud and AWS compete directly against each other in the cloud storage market as both are industry leaders in cloud infrastructure.

Thomas was previously general manager of Amazon’s Elastic Block Store (EBS) until departing the company in 2021. Amazon EBS is the company’s high-performance block-storage service designed for Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). From 2014 to 2019, he was general manager of Amazon WorkSpaces, while Thomas has also held AWS roles such as director of EC2 Fleet.

Thomas did a brief stint at Epic Games in a vice president role before joining Google in June 2023.

Chris Vonderhaar

Google Title: Vice President of Demand and Supply Management

Previous Title: Vice President, AWS Data Center

After 13 years of leading AWS’ data center and infrastructure strategy, Chris Vonderhaar left to join Google Cloud this year.

Vonderhaar was responsible for the design, planning, construction and operations of AWS’ massive data center fleet on a worldwide basis before he abruptly left AWS. He was vice president of AWS Data Center Community. In addition to leading AWS’ data center global strategy, Vonderhaar was responsible for business development and procurement of utility connections, the AWS renewable energy portfolio, and AWS sustainability teams and business.

He is now vice president of demand and supply management at Google Cloud.