Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is joining the Starbucks board of directors. The 49-year-old will join alongside Sam’s Club CEO Rosalind Brewer and Lego executive chairman Jørgen Vig Knudstorp. Starbucks has nominated Nadella to bring some technical experience to its board, following the resignation of current CEO Howard Schultz. The coffee company plans to transition to new CEO Kevin Johnson in April, after Schultz announced his resignation in December. Schultz has been praised for transforming Starbucks, particularly in its modern technology-focused approach.
Nadella is no stranger to Starbucks. Both Microsoft and Starbucks are located near to Seattle, and the companies have partnered in the past. Starbucks was one of the first third-party applications available on Microsoft’s Band device, and the coffee giant even introduced a method to schedule coffee meetings using Microsoft’s Outlook email app last year. “I’m honored to have been nominated to join the Board of this world-renowned company,” says Nadella. “As a regular customer myself, I’ve always admired Starbucks focus and deep passion for its customers and the communities it does business in and hope my years of experience in the technology industry will be of value to the company.”
Starbucks nomination of Nadella does not necessarily mean we’re going to start seeing Surfaces and Xbox consoles appear in the company’s coffee shops just yet, nor does it mean Microsoft is suddenly going to invest into Java. The tight partnership between the two locals will likely get closer, especially in areas where Microsoft’s technology could benefit Starbucks worldwide.