Nadella appoints Mark Penn as Microsoft’s Chief Strategy Officer


In an email to Microsoft employees, the company’s new CEO Satya Nadella announced his decision of appointing former advisor to President Bill Clinton, Mark Penn to the newly created role of chief strategy officer.

Although, it is not yet clear which duties Penn will have in his new role, Nadella indicated that Penn’s marketing and lobbyist experience will be of great help for the company.

“Mark brings a blend of data analysis and creativity that has led to new ways of working and strong market outcomes such as the ‘Honestly’ campaign and the Super Bowl ad, both of which were widely cited as examples of high-impact advertising across the industry”.

Nadella’s email sent to the employees read “His focus on using data to quickly evaluate and evolve our campaigns has driven new insights and understanding. Mark and his team also will continue to provide input in the area of competitive research and analysis.”

Nadella said that he was keen on applying Mark’s skill set to current challenges that Microsoft is facing – “from new product ideas to helping shape the overall areas of strategic investment.”

Penn will be a member of and an advisor to the senior leadership team and will report to Nadella.

After serving as a third-party advisor to Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Penn officially joined Microsoft in 2012 as corporate vice president of strategic and special projects and became executive vice president of advertising and strategy in August 2013.

Penn has been behind numerous successful advertising campaigns, including an infamous criticism of President Barack Obama during the 2008 election and a “Don’t Get Scroogled” anti-Google campaign for Microsoft.

Nadella also confirmed the departure of company’s executive vice president of marketing Tami Reller, and executive vice president of business development and former Skype CEO Tony Bates.