(MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif.) -- The uncertain status of the marriage of Sergey Brin, Google's co-founder, became clearer Tuesday, when a spokesperson for Brin and his wife confirmed to ABC News that the couple has separated. The 40-year-old father of two has separated from his wife of six years, Ann Wojcicki. He reportedly is dating another Google executive — a woman 14 years his junior.
While Google would not confirm or deny the alleged romantic relationship, the representative for Brin and his wife told ABC News that the couple had "been living apart for months…and remain good friends and partners."
Google ties run deep in the Brin family. The sister of Brin's wife also is an executive with the company. It was she who years ago rented to Brin and to company co-founder Larry Page the garage where they created the famous search engine.
Anytime word leaks out about a big boss being involved with a subordinate, the potential for embarrassment exists. Google's own guidelines for proper behavior address that possibility. They recommend: "When faced with a potential conflict of interest, ask: Would this activity embarrass Google or me if it showed up on the front page of a newspaper or blog?"
Google's code of conduct, however, also states that a boss engaged in an office romance may not be breaking any rule if the vessel of his ardor does not report to him.
Brin qualifies as one of the richest people in the world. By Forbes' latest estimate, he's got $22.8 billion and ranks the 14th richest person in the U.S. He is hardly alone among wealthy captains of industry when it comes to having marital difficulties. Forbes recently surveyed the status of CEO/billionaire divorce worldwide. It listed the following as being among the most noteworthy de-couplings of recent months and years.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio