Kickstarter shakes up its leadership team, lays off senior staff and promotes executives as it tries to reinvent its brand

Crowdfunding startup Kickstarter is restructuring its senior leadership team — parting ways with seven executives or senior leaders and promoting two to its C-Suite, according to three people. knowledgeable about the subject matter and independently verified by Luck.

The chief legal officer, chief strategy officer, vice president of product, vice president of creator, and Kickstarter success backer are among those leaving, Luck have learned. As part of the changes, Kickstarter’s vice president of brand marketing, Courtney Brown Warren, was promoted to chief marketing officer and Mahesh Guruswamy, Kickstarter’s chief technology officer, was promoted to chief technology and marketing officer. product.

Once a buzzy startup in New York’s burgeoning tech scene, 15-year-old Kickstarter has tried to reinvent itself after years of steady growth, CEO turnover and fostering contentious alliances of rank-and-file employees. This week’s reshuffle is the company’s latest effort to restore its standing, now under CEO Everette Taylor, who took over in 2022.

“Kickstarter is undergoing a strategic restructuring to become a more agile and collaborative organization. This means a flatter management structure, more streamlined workflows, and teams aligned for better synergy,” a Kickstarter spokesperson said in a statement. “This change will ultimately allow us to better serve the creative projects and communities that are at the heart of Kickstarter,” she added. When contacted by phone, email or LinkedInAffected employees declined to comment or did not respond.

Taylor, who was hired as CEO shortly after Andreessen Horowitz’s crypto arm leadership secrets a $100 million tender offer three years ago, announced the changes on Thursday during the company’s general meeting. Taylor informed employees that the restructuring was the result of employee surveys and that the board wanted to reduce the size of the executive team, according to a person familiar with the meeting.

But rumors about the changes spread throughout the company after an automated Slack bot notified employees that people’s accounts had been disabled. According to a person familiar with the message, this news even reached some former employees before the general online meeting.

Taylor took over the company during a tumultuous time in Kickstarter’s history. After generating significant early buzz, Kickstarter’s growth stagnated as the company tried to expand its crowdfunding business. The union’s divisive push has exacerbated tensions between management and rank-and-file employees, and the company fired two of its union organizers in 2019.

In early December 2021, Kickstarter became available funding round led by a16z crypto, the cryptocurrency arm of Andreessen Horowitz, in a public offering, meaning employees can sell their equity to new investors. As part of the deal, Kickstarter explored relaunching its platform on a little-known blockchain called Celo—an initiative that has yet to be launched.

During Taylor’s tenure as CEO, Kickstarter has emphasized increasing its revenue stream and has hired a new chief financial officer.

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