The CEO of YouTube, Susan Wojcicki, has announced that she is stepping down. Wojcicki has been in the role for nine years and has been a Google employee for nearly twenty-five years.
The beginnings of Google
Susan Wojcicki has been involved with Google since 1998. That was when Google’s founders, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, started working from Wojcicki’s garage at her home in Silicon Valley. Wojcicki joined Google as the company’s first marketing manager a year later and became Google’s 16th employee.
Other roles at Google
Over the past twenty-five years, Wojcicki has had various roles within Google. She co-created Google Image Search and led Google’s first video and book search. She also helped lead the creation of AdSense, worked on the acquisitions of YouTube and DoubleClick and served as Senior Vice President (SVP) of Ads. Finally, Wojcicki became the CEO of YouTube nine years ago.
What has Wojcicki said?
Susan Wojcicki posted about her decision to step down on the YouTube official blog. She wrote that she had “decided to step back from my role as the head of YouTube and start a new chapter focused on my family, health, and personal projects I’m passionate about.” Wojcicki went on to say, “The time is right for me, and I feel able to do this because we have an incredible leadership team in place at YouTube”.
Who is taking over as CEO?
Susan Wojcicki revealed that Neal Mohan will take over as the SVP and new head of YouTube. Mohan is currently YouTube’s chief product officer. Wojcicki also said that in the short term, she would support Mohan to help with the transition. In addition, she will continue to work with some YouTube teams, coach team members and meet with creators. This isn’t the end for Wojcicki at Google, however. She also revealed that, in the longer term, she is taking on an advisory role across Google and Alphabet, Google’s parent firm.
What we think
YouTube has been facing a number of challenges and has recorded its slowest period of growth for several years. In addition, YouTube has seen its quarterly ad revenue decline year-over-year for the past two quarters. The platform has also been trying to fight off competition from its Chinese rival, TikTok. As a result, YouTube has been working to attract more creators to Shorts, the company’s response to TikTok. Neal Mohan has been leading this campaign and Shorts recorded over 50 billion daily views in the fourth quarter of last year. It, therefore, looks as though the future of YouTube is in safe hands and Google will still have access to Susan Wojcicki’s experience through her advisory role.