Microsoft Office Marketing Chief Resigns

Just weeks after launching Office 2003, VP Joe Eschbach is moving on to "pursue other interests." Veteran Chris Capossela is moving into his spot.

A high-profile member of Microsoft Corp.s information-worker business unit is stepping down, about a year after being recruited to Microsoft by Group Vice President Jeff Raikes.

Joe Eschbach, Microsofts corporate VP of the Information Worker Product Management Group, resigned from the company in November, according to the companys Web site. A Microsoft spokeswoman said that Eschbachs last day is Dec. 1, and that he is leaving "to pursue other opportunities."

Twelve-year Microsoft veteran Chris Capossela is taking Eschbachs place. Most recently, Capossela has served as general manager of Microsofts Project business. Capossela is remembered by many as the guy who "blue screened" one of Chairman Bill Gates Comdex Windows demonstrations — but survived to joke about it.

Eschbach was in charge of product management for Microsoft Office, SharePoint Team Services and Business Tools. He was charged with "driving worldwide business ownership, developing greater consistency around the world on pricing and licensing issues, and increasing communications to customers and the field." He also was responsible, in large part, for deciding on the composition and positioning of the six Office 2003 SKUs which Microsoft delivered this fall.

"He just wasnt very well-suited to the job," says one company insider, who requested anonymity. "Its a job with lots of big challenges ahead. He didnt really understand how to take the business forward."


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