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Longtime Microsoft Exec Says Goodbye

Microsoft SVP Bill Veghte
Microsoft SVP Bill Veghte
Source:Microsoft

Following a more than 19-year stint at Microsoft, a senior executive who carried much of the responsibility for launching Windows 7 is leaving.

Senior vice president Bill Veghte is leaving the company at the end of the month, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) said.

Veghte, who joined the company as an associate product manager working on the then-new Microsoft Office in 1990, said he wants to "run a business in a more end-to-end fashion," according to an e-mail from CEO Steve Ballmer to the executive staff said Thursday.

During his nearly two decades at Microsoft, Veghte has held numerous posts. Most recently he served as senior vice president of the Windows business with responsibilities for Windows marketing, a job he relinquished in July when Ballmer named Steven Sinofsky president of the Windows Division.

At the time, the company said Veghte would transfer to a different job at a later date, but he is now leaving the company—a sequence of events that's not uncommon for senior execs who get bumped out of jobs during high-level management reshufflings.

Veghte is credited with launching Microsoft's "I'm a PC" campaign, aimed at countering Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) "I'm a Mac" ads.

"He was instrumental in the delivery and launch of Windows 7, helping us reenergize the Windows franchise," Ballmer's e-mail said.

Along the way, Veghte "managed the development of several Windows client releases [including Windows 98] and the development and marketing of the Windows Server 2003 and Small Business Server 2003 line of products," according to his online Microsoft biography.

"[Additionally,] he also managed Microsoft's North American sales and services organization, growing overall customer and partner satisfaction 18 percent and revenue by over $2 billion in three years," his biography continued.

Stuart J. Johnston is a contributing writer at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals.