Barry McCarthy was supposed to bring expertise and experience to fledgling startup Clinkle, but apparently he’s sitting this one out. Re/code reported on Thursday that the former Netflix CFO is now the former Clinkle COO, having stepped down from his executive role after less than five months on the job. And he’s not the only one. Clinkle’s new Vice President of Design Josh Brewer confirmed to Gigaom that he left the company on Wednesday barely a week after joining.
McCarthy and Brewer were two of Clinkle’s highest profile hires. McCarthy handled Netflix’s finances during its meteoric rise between 1999 and 2010, during it which it evolved from a DVD mail order business into a digital streaming giant. Brewer was formerly Twitter’s Principal Designer working on its mobile, table and web products.
In his interview with Re/Code, McCarthy — who remains an advisor to the company — said the company was far behind schedule in getting its mysterious payments product out the door, but he believes Clinkle and its young founder Lucas Duplan are now on the right track.
Judging by the huge turnover at the startup, though, something isn’t quite right at this new Silicon Valley darling. More than a quarter of Clinkle’s staff has either left or been laid off, and today’s news shows that the departures are creeping into the executive ranks as well.
Clinkle has gotten loads of attention since it raised a $25 million seed round last year from a who’s who list of investors, including Richard Branson (pictured with Duplan above). But so far the company has been very secretive about what it actually does. The company has revealed only the barest details about the vaunted mobile payments platform that attracted all that cash. We know that it will be a smartphone based mobile wallet that will work with existing point-of-sale systems and that Clinkle is focusing initially on college campuses.