Google-parent Alphabet Inc. said Eric Schmidt will step down from his post as executive chairman in January and transition to a role as technical adviser.
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Mr. Schmidt, who joined Google in 2001 and served as its chief executive until 2011, also will continue to serve on Alphabet's board, the company said in a statement Thursday.
Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google Chief Executive Sundar Pichai "and I all believe that the time is right in Alphabet's evolution for this transition," Mr. Schmidt said in the statement. "In recent years, I've been spending a lot of my time on science and technology issues, and philanthropy, and I plan to expand that work."