Lu, formerly Yahoo's vice president of engineering for the Search and Advertising Technology Group, will take over as president of Microsoft's Online Services Group on Jan. 5, Microsoft said. Lu left Yahoo in August after 10 years at the company.
In his new role at Microsoft, Lu will report to CEO Steve Ballmer. As Lu joins Microsoft, another executive in the OSG will be leaving. Brian McAndrews, the former CEO of digital advertising and services firm aQuantive and senior vice president of Microsoft's Advertiser and Publisher Solutions Group, will transition out of Microsoft in the next several months, the company said.
Microsoft purchased aQuantive in May 2007 in a US$6 billion deal, the largest acquisition the company has made to date. McAndrews will consult with Ballmer and Lu during the remainder of his time at the company to smooth Lu's transition to his new role, Microsoft said.
News that Microsoft would appoint Lu to take over its online business surfaced on the Thursday morning.
Lu will have his work cut out for him, as Microsoft has been struggling with its online business for some time. Growth of the OSG, which oversees Microsoft's search and advertising business, has been flat to slow for many years, despite the significant investment Microsoft has poured into the division.