Top 8 Things to Know about Microsoft’s New CEO

Satya Nadella was selected as Microsoft’s new CEO this past Tuesday. He’s only been on the job a few days, so there’s no way to judge him just yet. His appointment as CEO was met with near universal appraisal. From tech journalists to Wall Street, everyone seems to be happy. Here are 8 things to know about Microsoft’s new CEO.

He was born in India.

Specifically in Hyderabad, India. A city of nearly 7 million people located in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. He then came to the United States to learn, something he loves.

Worked at Sun Microsystems before Microsoft

Before Satya was a Microsoftie, he was Sun Microsytems’er. That’s probably not a word, but you get the point – he worked at Sun Microsystems. While there he was a member of the technology staff.

Has been at Microsoft for 22 years

Before becoming CEO this week, Satya worked at the company for over two decades. His legacy as an employee was moving Microsoft to cloud computing. The past few years he’s been the President of Server & Tools at Microsoft.  

Loves cricket and poetry.

Doesn’t matter where it’s Indian or American poetry, he loves all forms and finds relaxation by reading. He also compares poetry and even goes so far as to say “the best code is poetry”. Growing up in India he learned to love the game of cricket, specifically Test cricket. It’s a form of cricket where games could take days and days.

Is already dropping quotes we’ll remember for decades

Tuesday was Satya’s first day as CEO at Microsoft and he’s instantly quotable. Here’s what he said that we’ll probably be hearing fairly often:

“Our industry does not respect tradition - it only respects innovation”

He loves to learn

Satya is a very, very smart man. He joined Microsoft in 1992, but was working on his master’s degree in business at the time. He obviously joined Microsoft, so did he quit working on his master’s? Nope. Instead Satya would fly from Seattle to Chicago on Friday nights to attend Saturday classes. Returning to Microsoft to work during the week. It took two-and-a-half years, but he obtained his masters. Speaking of degrees.

Satya holds more degrees than you and me

We mentioned he loves to learn right? He’s got quite a handful of degrees. He went to Mangalore University in India to obtain a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. After that he came to the United States and went to study for his master’s in computer science from University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. His final degree, was the master’s degree in business from the University Of Chicago Booth School Of Business. But his learning doesn’t stop there. To this day he buys more books than he can read and listens to neuroscience classes when he gets ready in the day.

He’s only the third CEO at Microsoft

Crazy right? Microsoft has only had three CEO’s since its founding in 1975. Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer, and now Satya Nadella. Both Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer will still be around to help Satya out if he needs it. Bill Gates is now a technical advisor at Microsoft, while Steve Ballmer is still a member of Microsoft’s board and its largest shareholder.

Have any more fun facts about Satya? Share them below!

Source: Microsoft (opens in new tab), Wikipedia

  • Did you know that Satya came out 2nd in his batch in IIT?
  • What? He never studied at IIT Did you know the former prime minister of India PV Narshima Rao gate crashed to Satya Nadella's wedding!! [ Nadella's father was a secratery in Indian prime minister's office, but did not invite Mr. Rao as they wanted to have a very simple wedding. Rao found it out and showed up uninvited - asking why he was not invited ;) ]
  • That's crazy... Why would you invite your father's boss anyway, even if he is the PM? :P I'm not inviting any coworkers to my wedding, let alone my father's!
  • Indian weddings are lavish affairs generally involving the entire village.
  • Actually he studied at Manipal University..Not any of the IITs
  • Then known as MIT Manipal. Both of our professor is the same from MIT Manipal. :)
  • Lots of third-party developers have come out saying that he "gets us" and that they're excited to work with him. We could be seeing a gigantic boom for support in 2014 (at least, more than we expected)
  • एक भारतीय होने पर गर्व!!!!!!!
  • Its trying to communicate.
  • It was funny the first time, Its high time people realised that there are hundreds of other languages and scripts in this WORLD, Grow up and have a nice day! :)
  • It doesnt matter if the person reading it can't understand it. While you are indeed correct, English ranks second in the world for the number of peole that speak it behind Mandarin, if people are going particiate in international forums, it makes the most sense to particpate in the lanuage of the forum, then the largest group of people will be able to read, understand, and engage the author.
  • Asi que no te gustan otros idiomas, ¿he?, tal vez tengas 13 años. And, of course, you are wrong. Spanish is the second languge in the world, english is the third.
  • You mean as a primary language, as more people CAN speak English then Spanish, i.e. English as a 2nd (or other) language... India is a great example where people speak English as well as many other regional dialects. It also amazes me how many people can converse easily in soo many languages, like my wife telling me off in a multitude of languages
  • I only speak two languages, English and profane. :)
  • I am fluent in three languages: English, profanity, and sarcasm! ;-)
  • es "eh" no "he"
  • Yes.. I think so.. lol
  • Shh.... Don't scare it
  • Dick.
  • You cannot act any less mature, can you? Just because someone uses something you don't/can't understand, you address him as "it" ? And there are some idiots who pile on. Cheap :/ Try to learn or pass by. That is what is cool.
  • +1 When did it become cool to only know and understand one language?  It seems they are almost proud of the fact.
  • It's funny because your remark works both ways if you think of it.
  • You are right :P So I'm not sure which side he is on, except for the "+1". BTW are you on any side, or just making a comment? :D
  • I don't believe in sides. :) I do get the fact that people don't see the point in posting remarks in another lanugaue in an English thread on an mostly English oriented website. But than again, i don't see the point in calling the people who do this, stupid or calling them names or whatever. As long as the people who do post in another language understand that they are actively not allowing the majority of the other posters to engage in the conversation - what is actually the point of the comment section of the website, than i guess it's ok.
  • Now, that is the open mind that I wish to see in people :)
  • It's not about it being "cool to only know and understand one language". It's cool to know & understand English. For two people to communicate (without an intermediary), they must be speaking the same language. Either you must learn mine, or I must learn yours. Now, I speak English, the language that is clearly the most beneficial to speak(*). If you speak another language, it is of great benefit to you to learn English, while it is of lesser benefit to me to learn your language. (*) Some will argue this point. They will lose.
  • I am not gonna argue about anything. It is not worth the salt. After all, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Albeit, what I am asking is, if you see something you don't know, it is only obvious that it wasn't meant for you. See that reason and scroll down.
  • You should be proud to be Indian!  I visited in 2000 and loved it!  I would love to get back to visit some day!  
  • Jealous! Would love to visit.
  • Speak English fool. Posted via the WPC App for Android!
  • 我们都该学习中文!
  • 完全同意。 By the way, Spanish is the second language but only in terms of "native speakers", English is the second if you put together native and speakers as a second language. Perhaps it is the first, in terms of "I kind of speak a little English".
  • By the way, English is more British than United States. Didn't US adopted it and modified the language hideously as their own?
  • I suppose they changed it. Just as the British of the 20th century modified what they received from the 19th, and the 18th, and so on. And it will be like that until the end of the humankind.
    in any case probably Robert Frost's English had more degrees than you and me together.
  • Hideously? Nope, we removed those useless letters. Colour, really?
  • Shut up moron.
  • @monoyosh I'll write or speak in any language, who the fuck are you to telling me to speak in English! You moron android user! I written only for my Indian readers not for you stupid fuckbag! For your information, Hindi approximately the sixth-most-widely spoken language in the world. @planoman.. yes I'm proud of it and Thanks for understanding my Hindi language!
  • All the Indians don't understand Hindi. Only certain sections of people speak Hindi. Even if you post it in indian forums it would not ne helpful for all Indians. Please try to post it English so all people able to read this article will be benefitted.
  • Do you actually need to understand each and every word of the comments people post? He said that to a particular community- Hindi speakers. I understood. You din't Now whats wrong? Go put a diaper!
  • He said that for indian readers. Ha ha b4 you advice make sure you follow that. I am indian. I don't understand that language. For your info , i can very well understand what he conveys. Get some used diapers. You may need it
  • I'm looking forward to the future with Microsoft with satya at the helm.
  • Southern state of Telangana...
  • Somehow his appearance is more respectable than Ballmer's, he looks like a CEO.
  • +1 very professional indeed
  • A Microsoft CEO that loves Test Cricket. Never thought I'd live to see this day.
  • Soon we will see a cricket match between Windows team and Office team, due to recent performance by Windows team, my money is on Office team :/
  • I bet my 2520....when it arrives to Europe :/
  • He looks nice and professional! :) I think he'll be great!
  • I think you have an excellent name "Brecht" but he doesn't look funny. -_-
  • Sorry, I didn't want to be offensive, edited my post.. Sorry! :/
  • i thought Bill Gates was the largest shareholder?
  • He still might be, but not for long.  Gates has continued to sell shares over the years to fund his foundation.  If Ballmer isn't the largest shareholder already, he soon will be.
  • As of January 2014 the Proxy sttement shows Gates is holding approx 358 MILLION, yes MILLION share of MSFT.  Not sure about Ballmer but I think he has sold off in recent years as well to diversify his holding i.e. cash out?
  • Ballmer is at 333 million, so it appears Sam statement is incorrect.  But BING "Gates will surrender Microsoft shareholder crown to Ballmer in 2014" and you will see the story.  Gates has sold about 80 million shares a year.  Of course, Ballmer could start selling too.  But I think he wants to be the largest shareholder.
  • WOW!  Big money for both!  Good for them!  
  • Well the Bottom line is can he get the devices devisions making money. He's already proven he knows how to build a very successful service division. And for all the success Microsoft has had on the software and services side, its the hardware that's driving perception with the average consumer today. In short the device side of Microsoft needs to become cool. That's one hell of a perception change he's gonna be asked to engineer out of thin air. I hope he can do what Ballmer couldn't. Microsoft has some good hardware between the XBOX, Lumia and Surface Products. From a technology and engineering standpoint, these products are more advanced in a number of areas than their competitors, but they have to obtain that cool factor. That's what's holding them back
  • Part of me will miss the crazy Ballmer memes
  • Haha, same here. I take it Satya won't be threatening to "f$#%ing kill" Samsung any time soon? XD
  • Sweet he went to UW Milwaukee
  • ... said no one ever! jk.
  • Wikipedia as a source made me laugh. Judging by the looks and his qualifications, I think he can be the CEO that Ballmer never was.
    Looking forward for awesome new products from Microsoft. Btw, you guys owe us an interview with Satya. Keeping my fingers crossed for that.
  • I don't know why people hate on Wikipedia. If you (speaking in 2nd person) cannot verify Wikipedia article with the sources provided, then you should not be using it at all. Overall, Wikipedia is a wonderful website.
  • Lets how he does businesses
  • Let me tell you, as an employee of this great company, this is great news inside the camp as well. I am SO looking forward to where we go from here!!!
  • As a Cricket fan myself I think I like this guy :)
  • I love cricket too but do you realise that he is not captaining 11 players team, he is the CEO of $390bn company and soon in charge of 130k employee...let see if he is good in bowling or betting :)
  • I hope it's batting because we need offense, we need for him to hit all sixes.
  • FYI, Test cricket can take up to five days, not "days and days". Games not ending on the fifth day are considered a draw.
  • I love watching the 20/20 lol that's about it lol
  • True! I'm out of time and can't wait days and days for a match... I love 20/20
  • That's right.
  • Satya aka rap sheet (resume) looks good. I am hoping that Satya turn things around. +925 for Satya.
  • Do we yet know his stances on Xbox and Bing? I've seen reports of those two crappy board members (or was it shareholders?) that want him to sell off both of those awesome services. I hope he gives them two middle fingers.
  • I hope he sticks those two middle fingers up theirs and hoists them to the ceiling.
  • I guess he is a Bing man. When he left our group he moved to run Search, before it was named Bing. Maybe Bing was his term, sounds kind of Indian.
  • The HUGE WPC banner on the Windows 8 App covers up his head, I know you guys can design a banner better. Nice article though! Looking forward to the future
  • We know he got an Xbox One for his kids for Christmas and he uses it to watch Netflix.
  • I really hope Microsoft don't sell Xbox. I read somewhere that might sell Xbox.
  • So many people were vocal about not making changes that the Xbox one was going to bring in. (yes I was one of them) but I would think that if it comes to light that they actually want to sell Xbox there would be such an uproar that they'd probably not end up getting rid of it. To me Xbox is Microsoft. No on else.
  • Having three degrees is "more degrees than you and me"?? Only in the US maybe.
    I have a Law degree, a Post-Graduation is Political Science and Administration, a Masters Degree in Political Science and I'm now preparing my PhD. So...I guess no, Sam. Together we have more degrees than him lol
    In Europe the normal is to have the university degree, post-graduation (bachelors were practically abolished) and Masters degree. Then some move on to a PhD. And some even get a post-PhD. And that is why we Europeans like to act snobbish towards the common American lol :P That said, I sympathize with him on the books though. I also buy way too many books. Neurological Science though...not so much.
  • Agree here, I have a bachelors in chemical engineering and am working on a phd md program. So when I'm done I'll have the same amount as him
  • Yeah, that degrees part was weird. My wife has two undergraduate and two Masters degrees.
  • Well, Finland has the best educational program in the world and US ranks 22nd or so...
  • And that is why Europeans deserve more respect than Americans, although they tend to believe that US is the only existing country on this planet and the best in all aspects. Funny, eh?
  • You have to remember, WPCentral is a very US centric site.
  • Well here in the states we have our BSC's (behind shop counters) lol :)
  • He didnt study at Mangalore University -- Its Manipal University
  • Probably, back then Manipal University as we know now was affiliated to the Mangalore University. It's only some years back that Manipal started awarding its own degrees. This recent propensity in most news items to paint him as a graduate from Manipal seems like a clever advertising ploy engineered by the Manipal University PR department.
  • Error. Microsoft Corporation was founded in 1981, not 1976.  Prior to that there was a company called Microsoft that was a partnership betwen Bill Gates and Paul Allen.  It was never incorporated.  Interestingly, Gates and Allen for about a year were personally indemnifying IBM against any problems with PC-DOS with zero liability protection.  Now that's real trust in your code.
  • Wait. I hold more degrees than him. Sigh... 
  • Phil Spenser says Nadella's a friend of Xbox.
  • WPC probably reckons most members here are high school pass-outs or college drop-outs, LOL. But me- I do fulfil Sam's assertion that Satya has more degrees than we do. :D
  • Ballmer was bald, gates had specs, and now satya, has both:)
  • Bald specs? ;)
  • You sir, have a nice vision.
  • So in both Android and Windows head are Indians now
  • Satya in Hindi means - Truth
  • And Nadella means Or Dare...
  • +920^1520  Haha man you made my day!
  • "It’s a form of cricket where games could take days and days." Obiviously you don't know anything abt cricket????It is a game of 5 days and NOT DAYS AND DAYS.And btw proud to be an Indian.Congrats to Satya!
  • He probably meant the cognitive effect the game has on many of us. ;-)
  • N.9 - He is more photogenic than Steve Balmer. :p
  • He was the head of my group, Business Division, at Microsoft for some time. So he held many meetings at our campus, was about 6 years ago. Was clearly smart, great speaker, but not really at home with that group I thought. Have now seen all 3 of the big boys in the flesh, yes they are Rock Stars of a sort... Who was the most interesting? Steve.
  • India is proud of satya bhai... :P
  • Seems like a silent and up to the job guy.
  • I am not that excited about this guy. He looks like going to bury WP and whole ModernUI product line. Every tech journalist suggests him so.
  • Good read but he doesn't have more degrees than me.:)
  • Will he bring back XP? That's all I want to know.
  • "Will he bring back XP? That's all I want to know."   Seriously?   Sure and that fits right in with his quote "“Our industry does not respect tradition - it only respects innovation”..................not.
  • Lol he has more degrees than a thermometer
  • You mean he holds the same number of degrees =D
    But way more experience and capability.