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From Google to Alphabet: the rise of Sundar Pichai

Business Personalities
.From Google to Alphabet: the rise of Sundar Pichai

A two-room apartment at Ashok Nagar, Chennai which belonged to a family, namely Regunatha Pichai, an electrical engineer at GEC and Lakshmi Pichai, a stenographer and their two kids.

That’s the plot of our story, the story of a shy boy who was to change the way the world saw Google.


Since childhood, Sundar Pichai was blessed with the talent of memorizing numbers.

He could recall every phone number he had ever dialled on their Rotary phone. Inspired by his father, the young boy developed his interest in computers.

I always loved technology and while growing up I had dreams of Silicon Valley. I used to read about it, hear stories from my uncle.


He wrote his first software program – a chess game. On Completing his metallurgical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, Pichai received a scholarship which diverted his journey to Standford University.

After earning his MS from the university, he then attended the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School for his MBA.

Professional Stint

His professional journey took off from Applied Materials and McKinsey & Co, a consultancy giant.

The humorous co-incidence

Pichai gave his interview at the Googleplex on April Fools’ Day in 2004- the same day the company launched Gmail.

Google under his hat

His Journey at Google started with Google’s search toolbar.

Ensuing the reorganization of Google/Alphabet Inc., Sundar Pichai now runs the show of Google’s business segments including search, ads, maps, the Google Play Store, YouTube, and android as well.

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Microsoft’s Invitation

February 2014 rolled out widespread rumours about Pichai hosting to be in talks with Microsoft for becoming the third CEO to the technology giant.

His Walk-the-talk Mantra 

While deliberating over critical issues, Pichai follows his ‘taking a walk’ mantra just to come back with a solution.

Journey with Google 

In 2013, Sundar Pichai took over Android founder Andy Rubin’s briefcase to administer mobile platforms and contributed towards its growth trajectory.

Wiping off Microsoft’s chances to bag Pichai, Google negotiated with him to retain him for $50 million in a year in stocks.

Despite being the CEO of Google, Pichai looks after the day-to-day operations of the organization.

In August 2015, Pichai became the CEO of Google at the age of 42.

Pichai and the birth of Chrome

Earlier it wasn’t always possible to set your default search engine through browser settings, so one had to install a ‘toolbar’ to search the web.

Added to this, Microsoft launched its search engine ‘Bing’ browser by making it the default setting on Internet Explorer.

This raised the eyebrows of Google.

Pichai thought for a better idea challenge the status quo and that’s how chrome was born and opened the doors for Google to the browser market.

Amplifying Chrome

Pichai nurtured chrome beyond a browser. Followed by ChromeOS, Chromebooks and Chromecast were introduced as a medium to connect phones to TVs.

Android for everyone

Pichai observed the ‘next 5 billion’ users from India, Pichai spearheaded the project to create Android One – a lightweight version of Android that would work on affordable phones that didn’t have the highest specifications.


When Pichai’s censored search project in China received backlash from all over the world, Pichai addressed it as the right thing to do.

“I’m committed to serving users in China. Whatever form it takes, I actually don’t know the answer.” Pichai told The New York Times.


Pichai’s residence addresses as a 10,557 sq ft villa in Los Altos Hills in California.

The villa hosts amenities like a tennis court and a miniature golf field.

His wheely collection nestles 6 luxurious hot wheels including a Google testing car, a Cadillac, and a Tesla.

Since Sundar Pichai’s appointment as CEO, Alphabet’s stock price has risen 90% and revenue is up by 80%.

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