Opera Founder Von Tetzchner Stands Down

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelance and long standing contributor to TechWeek Europe

The straight talking CEO and co-founder of Opera Software has stepped down after fifteen years in charge of the web browser maker

Opera Software has announced that, effective immediately, co-founder and CEO Jon Von Tetzchner has stepped down from his role, after fifteen years in charge of the Norwegian web browser maker.

Von Tetzchner co-founded the company back in 1995 and has served as Chief Executive Officer since then. He will will continue to work full-time for Opera in a “strategic and independent capacity.”

Meanwhile Opera has promoted its Chief Commercial Officer, Lars Boilesen, to Chief Executive.

“Lars Boilesen brings both a very significant industry experience and a deep understanding of Opera to the role as the company’s Chief Executive Officer. In short, Opera’s spirit runs through his veins,” said von Tetzchner.

Boilesen worked at Opera from 2000 to 2005 as Executive Vice President of Sales, however in 2005 he jumped ship and joined Alcatel-Lucent as CEO of the Nordics and the Baltics. He rejoined Opera a year ago.

It seems that Von Tetzchner’s decision is his alone, with no indication of any possible dispute or problem.

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“My decision to assume a new role in Opera is based on a lengthy consideration process,” he said. “I was very happy about convincing Lars to come back to Opera one year ago. Today, I am very excited about asking him to take over as CEO as we continue our growth and global expansion.”

Von Tetzchner is known as a straight talking individual. Last May, he told eWEEK Europe UK that the iPhone’s impact on mobile web page views was over-rated.

“We provide browser technology not only to nearly 100 million consumers worldwide, but also to the major players in the industry: Vodafone, T-Mobile, Nintendo, KDDI, SKT, Nokia, Samsung, Toshiba and Sony Ericsson to name but a few,” said Lars Boilesen. “Our focus going forward is to execute on our current strategy and continue to deliver the best browser experience to the breadth of our customer and user base.”