Google's Sundar Pichai joins Microsoft CEO race
Google's Sundar Pichai joins the race to become Microsoft CEO Reuters

Although it appears near certain that senior executive Satya Nadella is to take over as the CEO of Microsoft, the name of another Indian, Sundar Pichai, has also popped up in the frontrunner race.

Pichai, the 42-year old chief executive at Google Chrome and Apps, is speculated to be the top choice among the names considered by the hiring committee of Microsoft.

"Microsoft could really move the ball down the field with Sundar Pichai in creating a new open operating system model for cloud, mobile and social," Dave Vellante, chief analyst at Wikibon, told the SiliconANGLE, the media website that exclusively reports on the technology industry.

"The market has been looking for a CEO who can balance the role of leading the enterprise transformation while keeping that consumer momentum with Xbox and reboot mobile. Pichai is the total package of technology leadership and business acumen."

Several high-profile names have been doing the rounds for taking over the mantle from Steve Ballmer. Whoever takes the top job will be the third one to lead the giant following the founders Bill Gates who was succeeded by Ballmer.

Ballmer had announced in August 2013 that he would retire within a year triggering a long-drawn hunt for the top post.

Who is Sundar Pichai?

Born in 1972, the Indian-born tech expert did his under-graduation at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, considered one of the top-most institutions in the country. He then pursued his masters from Stanford University in the US.

Following his post-graduation in business administration at the University of Pennsylvania, Pichai joined Google in 2004.

He was overseeing the management of software products including Google Chrome and Chrome OS before taking up Google Drive.

Since 2013, Pichai has also started managing Google's operating system Android.

It was earlier reported that Google paid Pichai $50m to continue in the company rejecting other offers, when it was rumoured that Twitter was trying to poach him.