Back in 2013, Xiaomi had poached Hugo Barra from Google in order to expand the company’s presence in International markets. He was then the Vice President of Android at Google and over the years helped elevate Xiaomi’s position from a relatively unknown Chinese company to a global force to be reckoned with.
Now, Hugo Barra has announced that he will be leaving Xiaomi in February in order to return to Silicon Valley.
Announcing the news via Facebook, Hugo Barra said, “When Lei Jun and Bin Lin came to me nearly four years ago with the opportunity to help turn a young rockstar startup into a global player, I embarked on what has been the greatest and most challenging adventure of my life. I moved to Beijing, 6,500 miles out of my comfort zone in Silicon Valley, to build from scratch a startup team within a bigger startup. This journey has been nothing short of spectacular in every way, and I can proudly say that Xiaomi Global is the first baby I helped bring into the world,” Barra wrote.
Barra has been fundamental in Xiaomi’s monumental rise over the last few years. From a bit player in the smartphone game, the company has gone on to become a major contender, standing tall amongst giants like Samsung and Sony.
During Hugo Barrio’s tenure at Xiaomi, the company expanded to many south east Asian countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and China. The company launched many successful products like the Redmi Note series, its flagship Mi range as well as the groundbreaking Mi Mix , which the company released recently.
The growth in India has been so dramatic that the company recently became the fastest OEM to cross $1 billion in annual revenues in the country.
Under Hugo’s tenure, the company also expanded its operation from smartphonesto many ‘Internet of Things’ products such as electric bikes, air purifiers and so on.
Sadly the company hasn’t been able to make a mark outside Asia and it struggles to meet the demands in the countries it is already in.The companies growth in China has also slowed down considerably thanks to OEM’s like Oppo, OnePlus and Vivo gaining ground.
Barra is now set to go back to Silicon Valley. He said “What I’ve realized is that the last few years of living in such a singular environment have taken a huge toll on my life and started affecting my health. My friends, what I consider to be my home, and my life are back in Silicon Valley, which is also much closer to my family. Seeing how much I’ve left behind these past few years, it is clear to me that the time has come to return,” he wrote.