What in the world is happening within Lenovo?

Just days after Lenovo hosted its huge “Tech World” event in Beijing and after touting the performance of its mobile performance group, the company on Monday disclosed that its top mobile business executive and chair of Lenovo’s Motorola Mobility is out.

The move – a stunner given the execs involved and the wave of new products in mobile – also affects Lenovo’s Internet spinoff with the leader of that group now taking over mobile.

The exit and shifts in responsibility come on the heels of other restructuring and management changes take place within Lenovo in the wake of the huge acquisitions last year of Motorola Mobility from Google and the x86 server business from IBM.

Turbulent times, indeed.

In a terse announcement, Lenovo, which operates its executive headquarters in Morrisville, described the departure of Liu Jun as a “change in senior leadership.”

It is that.

Liu, just 46, has spent nearly half his life (22 years) climbing the Lenovo corporate ladder.

If Lenovo Chair and CEO Yang Yanquing had a right-hand man when it came to diversifying the company away from PC reliance to the world of mobile and the Internet of things, it was Liu.

Liu led mobile business and also headed the board created to oversee Motorola.

Now, he “will become a special consultant to the CEO on mobile business and strategy for a certain period of time. Further details are not being disclosed at this time,” Lenovo said in the statement, which was not attributed to anyone.

“He will leave with our greatest respect and gratitude for his long, productive and successful service to Lenovo,” the company said.

The change also will have a big impact on the ShenQi group, which Lenovo first announced in January. The top execs leading that effort now have different roles, too.

“Chen Xudong, who has proven his ability to create a leader in China and has demonstrated his entrepreneurial spirit by becoming leader of our Internet-focused ShenQi spinoff, will become the new leader of MBG and also Chairman of Motorola Mobility,” Lenovo said.

Chen led Lenovo’s China operations for five years and also has led Asia Pacific. But even as he takes on the mobile business and Motorola roles, Chen will remain co-chair of ShenQi.

“Xudong will become Co-Chairman of ShenQi with George He. Edward Chang, currently Vice President of ShenQi, will become the CEO of ShenQi,” Lenovo said.

Parting praise

Lenovo’s announcement did include praise for Liu:

“Liu Jun built our mobile business beginning 4 years ago. Under his leadership, Lenovo became the world’s number 3 smartphone and tablet player, and completed our acquisition of Motorola Mobility. Liu Jun has created momentum for the Lenovo brand in emerging markets, and he successfully led us to close the Motorola Mobility deal. Liu Jun has helped diversify Lenovo’s business overall and has built a strong foundation.

“This year the company reported that mobile revenue has grown from 12% to 25% of revenue, year-to-year. Additionally, with Motorola, we are now in more than 60 markets worldwide, making us a truly global smartphone company. Lenovo’s total smartphone business with Motorola grew 450% outside of China in FY14/15, and accounts for 41% of shipments vs. 11% a year ago. Even Lenovo Legacy Phone saw strong growth outside of China (126% YTY) in FY14/15.”

Given all those nice words and achievements, Liu’s sudden departure is even more remarkable.

What next?