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Ballmer’s Top Advisor Leaves Microsoft

Microsoft’s SVP of Strategy and Partnership, Hank Vigil, who has been with the company for 25 years, will leave Microsoft this fall and become a “strategic advisor” to Microsoft. Vigil is leaving the company to focus on investing and advising early stage start-up companies.

Vigil, who has worked numerous jobs while at Microsoft, is one of the company’s most visible and well-liked executives in the tech community. Recently, Vigil was working directly with Ballmer “developing and managing strategic relationships, mergers, acquisitions and investment partnerships with media, consumer electronics, telecommunications, software and Internet companies.”

Vigil has worked on a wide range of deals such as Facebook, Nokia, and News Corp. Vigil was also a part of the WebTV acquisition and has helped Microsoft boost its digital TV strategy. In addition, he also worked on marketing and business strategy for Office, Word, and Excel.

Here is the internal memo that was sent by CEO Steve Ballmer:

After 25 years at Microsoft, Hank Vigil has decided it’s time to open a new chapter in his life.

Hank has covered a lot of ground, from launching Excel 3 and Office 95, to our early investments in ITV, to helping restructure our relationships with Sun, Time Warner, and Real Networks, to his more recent work helping to drive new investments and partnerships with companies like Yahoo!, Facebook, and Nokia. He’s been a critical strategic advisor and bridge-builder on some of the biggest industry opportunities we’ve dealt with in recent years.

He’ll be staying on until the fall, then he intends to do some early stage investing and advising start-up companies.

While Hank is leaving the company, he’s not going too far. I’m plea

sed to say that Hank will continue to provide his industry insight and strategic counsel going forward as an advisor to the company.

Please join me in congratulating Hank on a quarter-century of great work, and wishing him the best of luck in his new adventure.

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