New York: A month after Whatsapp’s parent company Facebook was hit by the Cambridge Analytica data leak scandal, Jan Koum, the CEO of WhatsApp, is leaving the company and Facebook.
Koum confirmed on his Facebook page today that he's leaving, saying it is time for him to "move on." In a post on Facebook, he said he was "taking some time off to do things I enjoy outside of technology".
Jan Koum co-founded WhatsApp with Brian Acton that Facebook bought for $19 billion in 2014, its largest-ever acquisition. Koum and Acton’s messaging app is known for protecting the privacy of its users using strong encryption.
The Washington Post, which earlier reported details of Koum's departure, said Koum would leave both WhatsApp and Facebook's board. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg commented that he will "miss working closely" with Koum. Facebook is reckoning with the worst privacy crisis in its history, not to mention questions over how it handles user data and, broadly speaking, whether it is good for the world.
Facebook bought WhatsApp in 2014, and back then, Koum wrote that the deal wouldn't have happened if WhatsApp "had to compromise on the core principles that will always define our company, our vision and our product."
Today, WhatsApp is the world’s most-used messaging app with over one billion monthly users, that’s more than double the 450 million it had at the date of the acquisition. (With Agency inputs)