Microsoft UK boss Gordon Frazier is heading east to the COO office in the Greater China Region (GCR), swapping roles with Michel van der Bel.
Sixteen-year Microsoft veteran Frazier took the UK reins from previous incumbent Alistair Baker in July 2006 after relocating from the operation in South Africa, but he is not the only exec moving to the Far East.
The software giant also confirmed that Ralph Haupter, currently area veep for Microsoft Germany is to become CEO of GCR, replacing Simon Leung, who has "decided to leave Microsoft for personal reasons".
Haupter and Van der Bel will report to Jean-Philippe Courtois, president of Microsoft International, which is basically all of the country operations outside of North America.
The new leaders for GCR will bolster the existing local management team, the firm claimed.
"These changes reflect a deep commitment to both the region and creating new opportunities and challenges for our most talented people", said Courtois in a prepared statement.
"China represents an unprecedented opportunity for growth across the breadth of our business," he added.
Channel sources said most of Microsoft UK decisions are made by the corporate team in the US, so the change-over will not dramatically impact resellers.
Some partners voiced surprise that Scott Dodds, currently business and marketing officer at Microsoft, who joined the UK biz in 2003 as GM for small midsize, solutions and partners (SMS&P) was not handed the top UK job.
The start date for Frazer and Van der Bel has not yet been confirmed as visa applications are underway, a Microsoft spokeswoman told The Reg. ®