Kara Swisher

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Microsoft's Point Man on Search–Satya Nadella–Speaks: "It's a Game of Scale"

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Another Microsoft exec BoomTown spoke to–while in Seattle last week–was Satya Nadella, SVP of Research and Development at its Online Services division, also known as the man in charge of search and online advertising technology for the just-struck partnership with Yahoo.

Nadella came to Microsoft in 1992 from Sun Microsystems (JAVA)–much like another company lifer and key dealmaker in the Yahoo partnership, Yusuf Mehdi, whom I also interviewed via video here.

After all that time, though, Nadella is probably facing his biggest challenge yet.

Because how the search business of Microsoft (MSFT) evolves, improves and, most of all, out-innovates–especially in the face of heretofore withering competition from search behemoth Google (GOOG)–is going to be a big factor in the success of the deal with Yahoo (YHOO).

In fact, the Silicon Valley Internet giant has essentially put its search technology eggs in the software company’s work-in-progress basket.

Now the Microsoft team must make a series of innovative tech leaps in order to grab more market share beyond what the pair bring to the table together.

Nadella, who was one of the key execs involved in the deal, has to make sure the companies hold onto top talent until the partnership is approved, while continuing to keep up the momentum of its new Bing search offering.

No pressure, Satya!

Nadella does acknowledge in the video interview here that Microsoft has has not been able to catch up with Google and talks about how that might now be possible.

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