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Head of Google Shopping Departs

The head of Google Shopping has left the company, his new employer revealed on Monday. Sameer Samat has been named President of Jawbone, a maker of consumer technology and wearable devices.

Samat had been Vice President of Product Management at Google, responsible for a range of products including the successful Google Shopping product – the consumer-facing flip-side of Google Product Listing Ads.

The Wall Street Journal said the departure would likely raise questions about Google’s same-day delivery service, which Samat had also overseen. The newspaper said Google Express has had trouble recruiting and retaining merchants and had been viewed by some “as an expensive attempt to compete with Amazon.com.”

Samat joined Google in 2008 and helped found and scale a number of significant businesses for the company. He was responsible for the offerings including Google Shopping, Google Express, Trusted Stores, Merchant Center, and Channel Intelligence.

He will report directly to Jawbone founder and CEO, Hosain Rahman, and will oversee all Product Development, Product Management and Business Development, Software Engineering, Design and Product Experience and the CTO organization, according to Jawbone’s announcement, which also quoted Samat: “Working with the Google Shopping team has been a career highlight and I’m excited to watch them continue to build an amazing service.”

Slashgear made the connection between Samat’s role at Google and his new job as head of Jawbone. Users of the Jawbone UP4 fitness tracker can “pay on the go.”

“Revealed last month, UP4 takes the core functionality of the UP3 activity tracker and adds in NFC for mobile payments,” according to the publication. “The wearable effectively embeds an American Express contactless credit card into the underside of the strap, able to seamlessly make payments when held next to a compatible point-of-sale terminal.”

Samat is a member of the Shop.org Thinktank and helped found and chair the Google Retail Advisory Council. You can read his interview with EcommerceBytes about online selling trends from 2013.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.