After 10 years as CEO of tech giant Google, Eric Schmidt announced today that he is stepping down from the role to become the company's executive chairman. Co-founder Larry Page will replace him as CEO in April, he said.
In a blog post, Schmidt said that he, Page and co-founder Sergey Brin decided over the holidays to change up their "triumvirate approach" to leading Google because managing the business has become more complicated.
"We will continue to discuss the big decisions among the three of us. But we have also agreed to clarify our individual roles so there's clear responsibility and accountability at the top of the company," he said.
Starting April 4, Page will assume the role of CEO and will also lead product development and technology strategy, which Schmidt said are his greatest strengths. He added that Brin will retain the title co-founder and focus on strategic projects, particularly new products.
As for himself, Schmidt said, "I will focus wherever I can add the greatest value: externally, on the deals, partnerships, customers and broader business relationships, government outreach and technology thought leadership that are increasingly important given Google's global reach; and internally as an advisor to Larry and Sergey."
Schmidt said that when he first joined Google, he never imagined the growth that the company has achieved but added that Google's emerging businesses are "on fire" and that the future is bright.
While he is proud of his decade as CEO, Schmidt said he is confident that Page will accomplish even more in the next ten years.
"In this new role I know he will merge Google's technology and business vision brilliantly," he wrote.
"We are confident that this focus will serve Google and our users well in the future. Larry, Sergey and I have worked exceptionally closely together for over a decade—and we anticipate working together for a long time to come. As friends, co-workers and computer scientists we have a lot in common, most important of all a profound belief in the potential for technology to make the world a better place," Schmidt continued.
The announcement came as part of Google's quarterly earnings report. The company reported revenues of $8.44 billion for the quarter that ended December 31, 2010, an increase of 26 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2009, and a net profit of $2.54 billion.
Schmidt also took to Twitter to announce the big change, writing, "Day-to-day adult supervision no longer needed!"