The following is a press release issued Tuesday, May 25, by WebTV Networks, Inc.
WebTV Networks Co-Founder Steve Perlman to Leave the Company
Bruce Leak Named WebTV President; Joins Microsoft Executive Staff
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. - May 25, 1999 - WebTV Networks, Inc., a subsidiary of
Microsoft Corp., today announced that president and co-founder Steve Perlman
is leaving the company at the end of the month. Perlman, a pioneer in
mass-market multimedia and communications technology, developed the WebTV®
concept in March 1995, and established WebTV Networks shortly thereafter
with Bruce Leak and Phil Goldman. Leak becomes president of WebTV Networks
and a member of Microsoft's executive staff reporting to Jon DeVaan, vice
president of Microsoft's Consumer and Commerce Group. Perlman becomes a
member of WebTV Networks' advisory board.
Perlman will take a long-postponed break through the summer and afterward
plans to explore new entrepreneurial endeavors.
"On behalf of Microsoft, I'd like to thank Steve for his amazing creativity
and leadership in making WebTV what it is today," DeVaan said. "Bruce will
provide the vision and leadership we need to continue to deliver on the
future television experience, and we look forward to his valuable, strategic
input as a member of the executive staff team at Microsoft."
"WebTV has been the most incredible adventure of my career," Perlman said.
"In just four short years, WebTV has redefined television, not only by
integrating the Internet and interactive programming, but by laying the
groundwork for 21st century television - when all programming will be
interactive and on-demand, and Internet connectivity will be a given. WebTV
Networks has solid management in place, huge momentum behind its current
products, relationships with top-tier companies throughout the world, and
amazing new products in its development pipeline. And WebTV has the most
awesome team ever assembled in Silicon Valley. I'll really miss everyone,
but I'm confident that WebTV is in great shape to take on the future."
"Steve has done an excellent job of positioning WebTV to define 21st century
television," Leak said. "We all will miss him but are excited about our
opportunity to continue to fulfill his vision."
Leak was formerly the general manager of WebTV Networks' Service Division
and also has served as chief operating officer for the company. Before
WebTV, Leak held management and development positions at Rocket Science
Games Inc. and General Magic Inc. He began his Silicon Valley career at
Apple Computer Inc., bringing multimedia to the desktop computer as the
creator and engineering team leader for QuickTime and 32-bit QuickDraw. A
graduate of Stanford University, Leak holds bachelor's and master's degrees
in electrical engineering.