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Published 05 March 2013 11:23, Updated 05 March 2013 11:48
Google’s Nick Leeder did his MBA in France in 1995. Photo: James Brickwood
There is a well-worn path for Australian executives at international companies to take on an Asia Pacific role or move to the US.
If Australians do move to Europe for business, it’s usually to the UK.
Moving to France is not your run-of-the-mill corporate relocation, so the news that Google’s Australian managing director, Nick Leeder, is moving to France to head up Google’s operations there might seem surprising at first.
For Leeder the decision is likely to be personal. Sure, it’s a good career opportunity since the French market is about three times the size of Australia.
But Leeder’s LinkedIn profile shows that he speaks French and did his MBA at INSEAD in Fontainebleau, south-east of Paris, back in 1995.
BRW understands Leeder’s wife is French and the family already spend most of their holidays there.
Leeder’s first degree was in mathematics at the University of Sydney. He worked at McKinsey, Fairfax Digital and News Limited before joining Google in March 2011.
BRW understands Leeder will be moving to France by April. Google advertised the vacant position on its website yesterday and is considering both internal and external candidates.
Leeder’s is not the first French connection among Google Australia’s executive ranks. His predecessor in running the Australian operations, Karim Temsamani, hails from France. In fact Leeder reported briefly to him after Temsamani was made president of Google’s Asia-Pacific region in January.