A week after news broke that Snapchat was charging $750,000 for one day of ephemeral ad placement, Snapchat’s head of revenue Mike Randall is out, according to a Re/Code report. Randall ran the company’s advertising endeavors for only seven months before his departure.
It’s unclear whether he’s leaving voluntary or if CEO Evan Spiegel forced him out. It’s also not obvious whether Randall’s departure is indicative of the company struggling with its nascent sales efforts, or if he just wasn’t a fit. I’ve reached out to the company for more information on what happened and will update this if I hear back.
Randall’s hire was originally a big boon for Snapchat since the company recruited him away from Facebook, where he oversaw advertising partnerships with app developers. At Snapchat, Randall reported to Emily White, another Facebook recruit who jumped ship for the ephemeral app. During his brief tenure he was responsible for the company’s “business and marketing partnerships,” i.e. its forays into advertising.
In the recent leaked Sony emails, information about Spiegel’s priorities and Snapchat’s business strategy came to light. Specifically, we learned that Spiegel was eager to start bringing in revenue for the company despite its young age. He believes a bubble pop is approaching in the app space and wants to make sure Snapchat can support itself before that happens.
Comscore stats that Gigaom obtained suggest the company’s growth among the over 18 crowd peaked in March and has been declining ever since. Snapchat’s biggest audience is youth but the company has saturated that market in the United States at this point. Given Spiegel has raised hundreds of millions of dollars in investment funding and turned down an acquisition offer in the billions from Facebook, it needs to build a viable company that can stand on its own.
Facebook waited seven years to introduce advertising, Twitter five, and Pinterest and Instagram four. Snapchat also comes in on the early-ish end at four years old.