In a surprising turn of events, Hugo Barra, VP of Xiaomi Global, has announced he will be leaving Xiaomi in February. Barra published an extensive Facebook post which explained the move, citing health concerns as part of the reasons behind the move.
This journey has been nothing short of spectacular in every way, and I can proudly say that Xiaomi Global is the first baby I helped bring into the world
But what I’ve realized is that the last few years of living in such a singular environment have taken a huge toll on my life and started affecting my health. My friends, what I consider to be my home, and my life are back in Silicon Valley, which is also much closer to my family. Seeing how much I’ve left behind these past few years, it is clear to me that the time has come to return.
Back in 2013, Barra famously left the ranks at Google to help build Xiaomi into the company that is continuing to grow. The move allowed Barra to walk away from some personal matters that had become public, while embarking on a new journey.
Luckily, Xiaomi was already comprised of former Googlers, with co-founder Bin Lin leaving Google to help form the new company. Over the course of the last 3.5 years, Barra worked with many, including his former company, to build Xiaomi into a company recognized by many Android users.
Xiaomi has continued to grow over the years, with various smartphones, tablets, and other consumer products being launched to much fanfare. Despite not entering the US market for smartphones, Xiaomi partnered with Google to launch the Mi Box, an Android TV set-top box. Then Barra and Xiaomi made its first-ever appearance at CES 2017, where the company unveiled a new variant to the Xiaomi Mi MIX, along with the new Mi TV 4.
Barra will not be leaving his post at the company until after the Chinese New Year, but will be “embarking on a new adventure back in Silicon Valley.” Bin Lin, Co-founder of Xiaomi, commented on Barra’s Facebook post to thank him for his commitment to the company while announcing that Xiang Wang, SVP of Xiaomi, will assume Barra’s role.
When Hugo joined us 3.5 years ago, we started an amazing adventure to turn Xiaomi into a global player. We have come a long way since, and I couldn’t thank him enough for contributing so much to Xiaomi’s journey. As much as we would love to have Hugo stay with us in Beijing for a much longer time, we understand his personal challenges and wish him all the best in his future endeavors. I’m also looking forward to working closely with him in his new role as advisor to Xiaomi.
Xiang Wang, Xiaomi Senior Vice President, will lead our entire global efforts moving forward. We have ambitious expansion plans for 2017 and are confident in Xiang’s leadership to take our global business to even greater heights!
– Bin Lin, Co-Founder & President, Xiaomi
Here’s to hoping that Hugo’s next “adventure” brings us Android fans something new and awesome. But, only after he’s had enough time to rest and recuperate from a busy few years.