Google Completes Motorola Acquisition, Appoints Dennis Woodside CEO

Google and Motorola MergeTo no one’s surprise, Google finally completed its long-anticipated merger with Motorola Mobility today, announcing that the deal had closed for a price of $40 per share. Google Exec Dennis Woodside, who had helped oversee the merger, will take over as CEO of the division with former Motorola head Sanjay Jha stepping down. 

Though some in the industry are concerned that Motorola may get early access to new versions of the Android OS, so far Google has done everything in its power to show partners like Samsung and HTC that it won’t be giving its latest acquisition any special treatment. When it came time to release its first Ice Cream Sandwich phone last fall, Google offered the opportunity to Samsung, which came out with the Galaxy Nexus, not Motorola. And the company recently announced it would allow multiple manufacturers to build its flagship Nexus phones at the same time.

Whether merging with Google helps or hurts Motorola’s market position remains to be seen. Check out the press release below for more details:

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. – May 22, 2012 – Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) announced today that the acquisition of Motorola Mobility Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: MMI) has closed, with Google acquiring MMI for $40.00 per share in cash.

The acquisition will enable Google to supercharge the Android ecosystem and will enhance competition in mobile computing. Motorola Mobility will remain a licensee of Android and Android will remain open. Google will run Motorola Mobility as a separate business.

Sanjay Jha, who revived Motorola’s Mobile Devices business and led the company through this acquisition, has stepped down as CEO, although he will continue to work with Google to help ensure a smooth transition.

Dennis Woodside, who has overseen integration planning for the acquisition and previously served as President of Google’s Americas region, has become CEO of Motorola Mobility.

Larry Page, CEO of Google, said, “I’m happy to announce the deal has closed. Motorola is a great American tech company, with a track record of over 80 years of innovation. It’s a great time to be in the mobile business, and I’m confident that the team at Motorola will be creating the next generation of mobile devices that will improve lives for years to come.

“Sanjay Jha, who was responsible for building the company and placing a big bet on Android, has stepped down as CEO. I would like to thank him for his efforts and am tremendously pleased that he will be working to ensure a smooth transition as long-time Googler Dennis Woodside takes over as CEO of Motorola Mobility.

“I’ve known Dennis for nearly a decade, and he’s been phenomenal at building teams and delivering on some of Google’s biggest bets. Dennis has always been a committed partner to our customers and I know he will be an outstanding leader of Motorola–and he’s already off to great start with some very strong new hires for the Motorola team.”

Dennis Woodside, CEO of Motorola Mobility, said: “Motorola literally invented the entire mobile industry with the first-ever commercial cell phone in 1983. Thirty years later, mobile devices are at the center of the computing revolution.

“Our aim is simple: to focus Motorola Mobility’s remarkable talent on fewer, bigger bets, and create wonderful devices that are used by people around the world.”

Dennis Woodside has hired a small number of leaders who will immediately join Motorola’s executive team, including Regina Dugan (former Director of DARPA), Mark Randall (former supply chain VP at Amazon and previously at Nokia), Vanessa Wittman (former CFO of Marsh & McLennan), Scott Sullivan (former head of HR at Visa and NVIDIA), and Gary Briggs (former Google VP of Consumer Marketing). In addition to these new leaders, many members of Motorola Mobility’s team will continue in their current roles: Iqbal Arshad (Product Development), Marshall Brown (Chief of Staff), Fei Liu (Mass Market Products), Dan Moloney (Home), Scott Offer (General Counsel), Mark Shockley (Sales), Mahesh Veerina (Software & Enterprise) and Jim Wicks (Consumer Experience Design).

Woodside added: “Motorola Mobility has many outstanding leaders, including people who were behind the original RAZR in 2004 and recent successes like the Droid and RAZR MAXX. Our colleagues joining the team come from varied backgrounds, from DARPA to Amazon and NVIDIA, but they all share a track record of leading innovation at speed, and a great deal of excitement about the mission ahead.”

About Dennis Woodside

Dennis Woodside oversaw Google’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility, and is former President of Google’s Americas region. He has worked with partners, governments and advertisers in more than 30 countries. Most recently, Dennis was responsible for Google’s Sales & Operations in the Americas. In the U.S. alone, Dennis and his team drove revenue from $10.8 billion to $17.5 billion in under three years. He also was the lead business partner for Google’s advertising product development team, helping launch new ad products globally. Dennis started his career at the company spearheading investment across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. He was responsible for the overall go-to-market, product offering and acquisition strategies in these markets, which boasted a 20-fold increase during his tenure. Revenues grew to over $2 billion.

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