After longtime CEO Susan Wojcicki resigned on Thursday, YouTube will now be led by Neal Mohan (February 16). YouTube’s parent firm, Google, got its start in Wojcicki’s garage.
Her resignation occurs at a time when there is a lot of enthusiasm — and worry — about the potential impact of AI chatbots like ChatGPT, which is now integrated with competitor Microsoft’s Bing Search. TikTok and Instagram Reels are two other short-video platforms that compete fiercely with YouTube.
Addressing Wojcicki, Mohan said on Twitter, “It’s been amazing to work with you over the years. You’ve built YouTube into an extraordinary home for creators and viewers. I’m excited to continue this awesome and important mission. Looking forward to what lies ahead.”
Neal Mohan, a Stanford alumnus who joined Google in 2008, oversees YouTube’s Shorts and Music departments as its chief product officer. Additionally, he has experience with Microsoft and serves on the boards of 23andMe and the personal styling business Stitch Fix. Additionally, he belongs to the Council on Foreign Relations, a free-standing American think organisation.
Mohan attended Stanford University for four years to earn a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering. In the early 2000s, he enrolled in the Graduate School of Business to pursue an MBA.
He spent many years working for the internet advertising firm DoubleClick. He joined the digital behemoth when Google acquired him in 2007, rising to the position of senior vice president of Display and Video Ads. He has a great understanding of our company, our workers, our creative and user communities, and our product. Neal will be a fantastic leader for YouTube, according to Wojcicki.
Since he was appointed chief product officer in 2015, Mohan has contributed to managing and releasing YouTube’s other key products, according to Fast Company.
He once told Fast Company, “The greatest analogy that comes to mind for me is actually just thinking about YouTube as a stage.” The “best viewpoints of the creators that they are most excited about” are what viewers need.
He was apparently offered the Chief Product Officer role at Twitter, according to a 2013 Business Insider article, but Google spent close to $100 million to keep him. He was also described as a “unique” mix by a former supervisor, “an ‘insatiable techie’ who yet had the business sense” to engage with clients strategically.
Indian-born Mohan is one of several CEOs overseeing other major global tech companies, including Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, Adobe’s Shantanu Narayen, and Alphabet’s Sundar Pichai. In recent years, Indian-origin CEOs have also led other venerable US corporations, including FedEx, one of the largest providers of transportation services in the world, and Starbucks, where Laxman Narasimhan is poised to take the helm.