And the stock market is loving it.

Capital Gains

After a nearly year-long search, Google's parent company has found its next chief financial officer — and it's one who has no experience in big tech.

As Reuters reports, Google's parent company Alphabet has named longtime Eli Lilly CFO Anat Ashkenazi as the successor to its own outgoing CFO, Ruth Porat, who will be transitioning to a role as the company's chief investment officer.

The hiring of the pharmaceutical executive, who's overseen Eli Lilly's finances amid its massive growth from selling the weight loss drugs Mounjaro and Zepbound, comes during Google's own attempts at growth in the artificial intelligence field.

"The AI era is giving us an incredible opportunity to innovate at scale across our core products," Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai said of Ashkenazi's hiring, per Reuters. "I look forward to working with Anat as we invest responsibly to support our next wave of growth."

Stock Hop

Aside from making two of the most popular glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonists on the market, Eli Lilly has long been a pharmaceutical juggernaut for drugs like the erectile dysfunction medication Cialis and the antidepressant Prozac. Having spent 23 years at the company before being apparently poached, Ashkenazi clearly knows a thing or two about growth.

Indeed, in the wake of news of her hiring earlier in the week, Google's stock jumped and has been rising steadily since. As Investor's Business Daily noted in its reporting on the CFO change, the company's stock had already risen nearly a quarter this year as the company rolled out new AI products — even though those features have heretofore been, to put it plainly, not that great.

That bullishness may be, as Jeffries stock analyst Brent Thill told MarketWatch, due to the optimism that Ashkenazi will bring some "much-needed" investor transparency to Alphabet during its AI growth spurt, despite her lack of experience in the tech industry.

"We believe that Anat's experience as CFO of a biotech company will suit her well to steer [Alphabet] in the age of AI,"  Thill told the financial outlet, "driving investments in new experimental AI products whose revenue may be uncertain and far off, while also protecting margins."

Whether her hiring will have any effect on Google's rash of AI-era layoffs, however, remains to be seen.

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