Microsoft's Tony BatesMicrosoft

Former Skype CEO Tony Bates named president of GoPro

Action camera manufacturer GoPro has named former Microsoft and Skype executive Tony Bates as its new president, the company said on Wednesday.

Bates will also join the GoPro board of directors, the company said.

Bates, 47, joined Microsoft in 2011 via its acquisition of Skype, where Bates had served as chief executive for a year. Up until March 2014, Bates served as executive vice president of business development, strategy and evangelism.

However, Bates was also an early favorite to succeed Steve Ballmer as chief executive of Microsoft, in the running with Kevin Turner, Stephen Elop and other current and former Microsoft executives. When Satya Nadella was eventually named chief executive of Microsoft, executives started leaving for greener pastures. Bates and executive vice president Tami Reller departed in March

"It's an honor to join the GoPro team," Bates said in a statement. "GoPro represents everything that excites me in a company. Incredible products, compelling content, a world-renowned brand and above all, amazing people who make it happen. Working for a technology company that creates products that people love and that capture life's magical moments is a dream come true."

Both Bates and Peter Gotcher, the chairman of Dolby Laboratories, will sit on GoPro's board of directors. GoPro named Jack Lazar its chief financial officer in March. Both Bates and Lazar report to founder and chief executive Nicholas Woodman.

GoPro, the manufacturers of a line of rugged digital cameras that can be mounted to record video of extreme sports, has already forged ties with Microsoft. A GoPro app is currently available for the Xbox 360, and a related app will debut on the Xbox One this summer, part of a slew of new entertainment apps for the Xbox platform.

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