Tony Fadell, the high profile and controversial CEO of Nest is stepping down.
In his place, Nest, which is owned by Google parent company Alphabet, announced that it has hired Marwan Fawaz.
Compared to Fadell, a former Apple executive who often gave interviews to the press, Fawaz is not as much of a known quantity in Silicon Valley.
In fact, according to his LinkedIn bio, his current gig is in Denver, as a managing partner for Sarepta Advisors.
So who is he?
Fawaz is a cable industry veteran who actually worked at Google before.
He was President of Motorola Home, the cable set top box business that Google summarily sold off in 2012, shortly after it had acquired the Motorola Mobility business that Motorola Home was a part of.
A bio provided by Nest says that Fawaz repositioned the Motorola Home business “to streamline products, services and cost structure, resulting in strong financial performance in 2012 and a significantly improved capability to win new business. He successfully led the transaction process to divest of the business unit to Arris for $2.35 billion in 2013.”
That background raises the obvious question of whether Fawaz was brought in to Nest to arrange for a similar spin-off. A Nest spokesperson did not respond to a question about that possibility. (It’s worth noting that Alphabet executive chairman Eric Schmidt recently said it was unlikely that Alphabet would spin off any of its subsidiary companies.)
Fawaz also served as executive vice president of strategy and CTO of cable company Charter Communications, according to his bio. In 2011, Fawaz left Charter Communications with a $5.5 million severance package after the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
“Marwan’s extensive technology and engineering knowledge, his experience with global service providers, as well as his background in connected home platforms will be valuable in continuing our trajectory, especially in scaling the business, working with our partners, and supporting our enterprise channels,” Fadell said in his post.