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Microsoft's Gordon Frazer swaps UK MD role for Chinese post

Alex Scroxton

reshuffle concept michael blann.jpgLong-standing Microsoft UK managing director Gordon Frazer is packing his bags and heading for China to take up the post of regional COO, following a reshuffle at the software vendor's Greater China Region operation, which covers China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

He will be replaced in the UK in a straight job swap by current China COO Michel van der Bel, who will report to Microsoft International president Jean-Philippe Courtois.

Frazer joined Microsoft in 1996 in a marketing role, and during his 16 year stint at the firm has held various roles including managing director of South Africa, before becoming UK boss in 2006.

He also sits on the UK E-skills Industry Board and the UK CBI Higher Education Task Force, where he has been an influential voice in calling for greater co-operation and integration between businesses and the world of higher education.

However, Frazer's time at the top was tarnished somewhat by his involvement last year in a major court case surrounding allegations of sexual harrassment by his one-time probable successor at a vodka and Jagermeister-fuelled Microsoft staff party.

Frazer will be accompanied to the Far East by his new boss, Microsoft Germany area vice president Ralph Haupter, who is taking up the role of Microsoft China CEO following the sudden resignation of previous incumbent Simon Leung.

Van der Bel, meanwhile, joined Microsoft at the turn of the century and prior to his stint in China was vice president of public sector for Microsoft International, and general manager of the Netherlands.

"I am incredibly optimistic about the deep expertise, discipline and energy Michel will bring to Microsoft UK," said Courtois.

"The UK [is] among our largest and most strategic markets outside the United States, and we are deeply invested in ensuring the ongoing growth of the busienss and exceeding the expectations of our customers there," he added.

Frazer will be accompanied to the Far East by his new boss, Microsoft Germany area vice president Ralph Haupter, who is taking up the role of Microsoft China CEO following the sudden resignation of previous incumbent Simon Leung.

Image courtesy: Michael Blann


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