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Naveen Selvadurai, Foursquare co-founder is leaving

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UPDATED: Last week, when I heard the news that Foursquare investors were buying up stock from current employees, it piqued my interest —  who was Spark Capital buying stock from, I wondered? For nearly three years, it has been one of my favorite apps, and I keep close tabs on the company. Digging around, I ended up with an entirely different bit of information: Foursquare co-founder Naveen Selvadurai is likely leaving the company, although I don’t know why. The company declined to comment on his pending exit.

Selvadurai and Dennis Crowley started Foursquare together. Selvadurai worked on the first Foursquare iPhone app, but since then the company has added many more engineers and developers. The company has come a long way since those early days, and has attracted investment dollars from some of the biggest investors in business such as Union Square Ventures, Spark Capital, DST Technologies and Andreessen Horowitz.

The New York-based company, which moved into new offices recently, is currently said to be  valued at over $700 million and has been growing its team in both New York and San Francisco. Crowley when speaking said at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that his company has tripled the number of users from five million to 15 million in past one year and has signed up 750,000 merchants.

PS: I chatted with Selvadurai in September 2011 and here is a video for you to enjoy. Here are my two conversations with Crowley — Facebook, Check-in Fatigue and the Copy Cats & How location will connect us.

UPDATE: Selvadurai confirmed his departure in a blog post. He did not say what he is moving on to but said he will be a familiar face around Foursquare.

“I’m on the board, I’ll still be advising, and I’m obviously going to be the single most vocal user. But the spring is time for things that are new, and i realize that i have a desire to do something new as well. I’m not sure about my exact next steps, but I’ll probably get back to what I love most – being an entrepreneur, learning and building new things.”

10 Responses to “Naveen Selvadurai, Foursquare co-founder is leaving”

  1. Seth Hart

    love the app, but still trying to figure out, beyond the Amex deal (future partnerships similar), how they’re going to make money. any thoughts?

  2. As i checkin here at my china office….i love foursquare….somehow chinese government didnt block the app and people in china are checking in like crazy….

    Its one of my fave apps too….wish Naveen the best im future endeavors

  3. Wishing Naveen all the best for his future endeavour. Foursquare has been my favourite app of late too. I shifted to Mumbai recently from Pune. There are lot of places I reach with the help of locals. I check in to that place once I reach to have a ready reckoner in my foursquare history for future visits. It works amazingly that way! :) Nice scoop Om!

  4. Carlos

    Foursquare has grown to the point that either Naveen or Dennis can leave and the company will continue fine, however, it interesting to see/know who is exactly the “brains” that got the company where it is now.

    • Interesting observation. I think the timing of “founders” leaving is always up for debate. I am not smart enough to forecast what the impact will be on Foursquare. Anyway we shall see what happens.

  5. Andrew Brackin

    Very interesting scoop Om. Foursquare is a very interesting company that has (somewhat) shown how it can become a businesses and build out of the checkins market alone. Great piece, interested to hear what he’ll do next. All I know is Foursquare will be fine.