Facebook loses two key executives

Gladys Abbott
March 15, 2019

These apps have been distinct until recently, when Zuckerberg announced plans to unify them under a banner of/with a new focus on privacy. And Simo, along with the head of Instagram Adam Mosseri, head of Messenger Stan Chudnovsky, and head of WhatsApp Will Cathcart, will report directly to Zuckerberg.

"It is with great sadness I share with you that after thirteen years, I've chose to leave the company", Cox wrote in his post.

Cox, 36, worked closely with Zuckerberg through the company's ups and downs, having joined up about 20 months after Facebook was hatched in 2004 in Zuckerberg's Harvard dorm room.

Will Cathcart was announced as the new lead on WhatsApp, while Zuckerberg, apparently consolidating power as he prepares to merge the apps in some way or another, states he does "not plan on immediately appointing anyone to fill Chris's role in the near term".

And just more than a week later, two of its biggest executives are leaving the company. He also built Facebook's first human resources teams and oversaw the strategy for the apps that Facebook owns, Zuckerberg wrote.

"We have a clear plan for our apps, centered around making private messaging, stories and groups the foundation of the experience, including enabling encryption and interoperability across our services", Zuckerberg stated in his goodbye note to Cox.

Zuckerberg said in a separate blog post on the same day that the veteran executive had considered moving on several years ago but stayed around after 2016.

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Daniels, meanwhile, headed up WhatsApp since co-founder Jan Koum's departure in April.

Facebook isn't hiring another executive to replace Cox.

Originally published March 14, 1:19 p.m. Update, 1:48 p.m.: Includes more background and Zuckerberg's post to employees; 1:55 p.m.: Adds background about other executive departures; 2:15 p.m.: Includes post from Chris Cox.

Fidji Simo will take over as the head of the Facebook app.

Daniels has been at Facebook almost nine years, and previously led the company's Internet.org effort, a project aimed at bringing internet access to developing countries.

Daniels took the helm of WhatsApp after founders Jan Koum and Brian Acton left the messaging app previous year, reportedly over disagreements about the increased integration of WhatsApp's operations with Facebook's.

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