Nat Friedman, CEO of Microsoft GitHub replaced by Thomas Dohmke


From left to right, GitHub CEO Chris Wanstrath, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and future GitHub CEO Nat Friedman at GitHub headquarters in San Francisco.

Source: Microsoft

Microsoft announced Wednesday that Nat Friedman, CEO of the company’s GitHub subsidiary that provides software to store source code, is stepping down. Thomas Dohmke, Product Manager at GitHub, will replace him.

The announcement comes weeks after one of GitHub’s biggest competitors, GitLab, went public on Nasdaq. After its debut, GitLab was worth $ 16.5 billion, more than twice what Microsoft paid for GitHub in 2018.

“As a product manager, I’m proud of the work our teams have done to bring new functionality to GitHub code spaces, issues, co-pilot and many of the 20,000 enhancements we made last year.” , Dohmke wrote in a blog post. “Together, we have built a roadmap that will transform the developer experience for open source maintainers and businesses using GitHub for years to come.”

Dohmke replaces Friedman on November 15.

Friedman is “very happy to go back to my startup roots to support and invest in the builders who are creating the world of tomorrow,” he wrote in a Tweeter. He will be advising both GitHub and Microsoft, Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of Microsoft’s cloud and artificial intelligence group, wrote in an email to employees.

Prior to becoming the leader of GitHub, Friedman was co-founder and CEO of Xamarin, a start-up that built cross-platform mobile development tools. Microsoft acquired Xamarin in 2016 and made Friedman a corporate vice president for developer services. Then in 2018, after Microsoft closed the acquisition of GitHub, it hired Friedman to lead the subsidiary. His appointment came months after co-founder Chris Wanstrath stepped down as CEO.

Dohmke first registered as a GitHub user in 2009, shortly after its inception in 2008. He was co-founder and CEO of application testing software startup HockeyApp, which Microsoft acquired in 2014. It moved to GitHub when Microsoft shut down. the acquisition of GitHub in 2018.

Dohmke “led the acquisition process of GitHub on the engineering side of Microsoft, from the signing of the agreement to the successful completion of the acquisition,” Guthrie wrote in his email. Dohmke then led the acquisitions of Npm, a code distribution startup, and Semmle, a startup whose software helps organizations analyze code for security issues, Guthrie wrote.

Since the acquisition, Friedman has reported to Guthrie. Once Dohmke takes over as head of GitHub, he will report to Julia Liuson, a 29-year Microsoft veteran who becomes president of Microsoft’s developer division.

In the Friedman years, GitHub released new features and improved existing ones. Perhaps the most significant announcement was the introduction in June of GitHub Copilot, a system that leverages code posted online to suggest new code developers can add to their projects. The feature remains available to a limited number of users, and people show off its capabilities on social networks.

Microsoft does not disclose GitHub revenue, but the company occasionally provides updates on the size of the service’s user base. Over 73 million developers were using GitHub today, up from 28 million when Microsoft announced plans to buy GitHub.

GitHub’s challengers have also gotten bigger. In 2019, Atlassian said its Bitbucket Cloud service reached 10 million registered users. And GitLab, which indicated in its IPO prospectus that its “main competitor is Microsoft Corporation following the acquisition of GitHub,” estimates that it has 30 million registered users. GitLab said revenue increased 69% year-over-year in the quarter ended July 31.

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