GitHub CEO Nat Friedman to step down

Chief product officer Thomas Dohmke, who led Microsoft's acquisition of GitHub, will take over as CEO

The GitHub sign outside its headquarters

GitHub CEO Nat Friedman has announced he will be stepping down from his role to pursue investment opportunities with developers elsewhere.

The company's chief product officer, Thomas Dohmke, will replace Friedman as CEO, officially taking charge on 15 November.

Friedman will move to "chairman emeritus", which is a title held by executives that retire. In this role, Friedman will act as an advisor to both GitHub and Microsoft, but he will have more time to get back to his "roots" working with startups and developers.

Before taking the top job at GitHub, Friedman co-founded Xamarin, a startup that built cross platform dev tools, which was acquired by Microsoft in 2016.

"With all that we've accomplished in mind, and more than five great years at Microsoft under my belt, I've decided it's time for me to go back to my startup roots," Friedman said in a blog post. "What drives me is enabling builders to create the future.

"I've loved working with and learning from developers who are building new tools and new projects, solving thorny problems, and creating magic out of code. That's why I'm moving on to my next adventure: to support, advise, and invest in the founders and developers who are creating the future with technology and tackling some of the biggest opportunities of our day."

Both Friedman and Dohmke joined GitHub's executive team shortly after its acquisition by Microsoft closed in 2018. Friedman replaced the coding platform's co-founder, Chris Wanstrath as CEO, who stepped down as part of the acquisition. Dohmke became the chief product officer, having also joined Microsoft via an acquisition.

Dohmke has been a registered GitHub user since 2009, not long after it was founded in 2008, and previously co-founded an app-testing software startup, HockeyApp, which was also acquired by Microsoft in 2014. He is also credited with leading Microsoft's acquisition process for GitHub, as well as deals for code-distribution startup Npm, and Semmle, which analyses code.

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