Facebook product chief Cox to exit as focus shifts to messaging

BP_Chris

"As Mark has outlined, we are turning a new page in our product direction, focused on an encrypted, interoperable, messaging network", Cox wrote.

In a note to employees about Cox's departure, Zuckerberg said Cox had been talking to him for a few years about doing something else but made a decision to stay after 2016 to help improve the social network.

Cox on Monday informed the company of his intention to resign, according to a regulatory filing on Thursday. "As we embark on this next major chapter, Chris has decided now is the time to step back from leading these teams".

On Thursday, the company announced that Chief Product Officer Chris Cox and Chris Daniels, who heads Facebook-owned messaging app WhatsApp, are leaving.

"Whenever there is a shift in strategy, it's not unusual to see some personnel changes", eMarketer analyst Jasmine Enberg said.

FILE PHOTO: Facebook Chief Product Officer Chris Cox speaks at Facebook Inc's annual F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, U.S. May 1, 2018.

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Daniels took over the leadership of WhatsApp a year ago after the founders of the service, Jan Koum and Brian Acton, left Facebook, citing directional disagreements with Zuckerberg. "But after 2016, we both realized we had too much important work to do to improve our products for society, and he stayed to help us work through these issues and help us chart a course for our family of apps going forward", Zuckerberg wrote.

Fidji Simo, head of video, games and monetization, will be the new head of the Facebook app, Mark Zuckerberg said in a blogpost.

Two top Facebook executives are leaving the company, and it's not clear what they're moving on to do.

Daniels has been at Facebook almost nine years, and previously led the company's Internet.org effort, a project aimed at bringing internet access to developing countries.

These two departures come on the heels of founding-executive departures at Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp a year ago. He will be replaced by Will Cathcart.

Zuckerberg still has a number of long-time product and engineering lieutenants.

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