Hexus reports that AMD Radeon Technologies Group honcho Raja Koduri has left the company. In a message to employees apparently obtained by the site, Koduri says he made the "extremely difficult decision" to leave his role after forty days into the sabbatical he began in September. AMD independently confirmed Koduri's departure to me this evening.
After a long career at ATI and some time spent working for Apple, Koduri returned to AMD's graphics unit in April 2013 as part of a sweeping change in management at the company, led by then-CEO Rory Read. Notable moments in Koduri's tenure included the launches of the Hawaii, Tonga, Fiji, Polaris, and Vega graphics processors, the advent of yearly Radeon Software releases with major new features, the formation of the Radeon Technologies Group as a separate business unit within AMD, and a focus on frame-time performance spearheaded by former TR Editor-in-Chief Scott Wasson, among other milestones.
Although Koduri's initiatives successfully demolished some major stumbling blocks for Radeon hardware and software, the protracted development of Vega products and their eventual arrival late in Nvidia's Pascal product cycle would seem to have played some role in Koduri's eventual sabbatical and departure.
According to AMD, CEO Lisa Su will continue to lead the Radeon Technologies Group for the time being. Hexus further reports that key members of AMD's CPU team will wield expanded influence in the Radeon Technologies Group as the graphics division gets back on an even keel.
In my admittedly brief time covering AMD's graphics processors, Koduri showed himself to be a wry, infectiously passionate and deeply knowledgeable technologist with a compelling vision for the future of computer graphics. It'll be interesting to see where he pops up next.