Eric Schmidt resigning as executive chair at Google parent Alphabet

Eric Schmidt will step down from his post as executive chairman of Google parent company Alphabet in January

Schmidt has been spending much his time on science and technology issues, as well as philanthropy, and his new role at Alphabet will help him to expand upon that work.

Mr Schmidt said in a statement: "the time is right in Alphabet's evolution for this transition".

When Google restructured in August 2015, forming Alphabet, Schmidt became Alphabet's executive chairman.

According to the company's latest proxy filings from April, Schmidt held shares worth about $4.9 billion and maintained 5.6 percent voting control over the company.

On Schmidt being shifted to technical advisor role, Alphabet chief said, "Eric has provided us with business and engineering expertise and a clear vision about the future of technology. I'm incredibly excited about the progress our companies are making, and about the strong leaders who are driving that innovation". To 10 years later become executive chairman, and continue to serve in this capacity through restructuring, and the birth of Alphabet.

Schmidt, Page, and Brin were considered a power triumvirate in control of Google.

More news: Salvation Army short of Christmas Kettle campaign goal

To succeed Schmit, the board is expected to put a non-executive chairman in place. About two years ago, Google unveiled a surprise corporate overhaul, forming a new parent company dubbed Alphabet to include internet search and a handful of independent companies.

Schmidt has served in senior roles at Google since 2001, when he was first brought on by Larry Page and Sergey Brin as the search giant's chief executive.

Alphabet's "Other Bets" businesses include self-driving vehicle company Waymo, and other technology companies such as Nest, Fiber and Verily.

Schmidt departs at a time when Google is still riding high as the world's second-most valuable corporation by market capitalization, behind only Apple.

The key outlet for that philanthropy has been The Schmidt Family Foundation, founded by Schmidt and his wife Wendy in 2006.

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