(TIME) — Bill Gates announces departure from Microsoft's board, capping years of radical change.
Microsoft co-founder and original CEO Bill Gates said he will leave the company's board to devote more time to his charitable foundation.
Bill Gates will remain as a technical adviser to the company, helping to guide CEO Satya Nadella and senior leadership on issues like the future of productivity software, health-care technology and artificial intelligence.
“I think it just says, ‘We’ve turned the page, we have completed our transition,’” said Merv Adrian, a vice president at research firm Gartner Inc., who has followed Microsoft closely for decades. “This feels like a graceful transition over several years. Now they feel that their work is done, and it’s time to go on.”
In many ways, the only concrete change is that Gates will skip the procedural work of being on the board. But symbolically, the severing of Microsoft’s final major tie to its founding story is a deeply significant moment for a company that has been reinventing itself over the past five years. The Microsoft Nadella oversees is a markedly different kind of company, in terms of both products and cultures, than the one Gates built.