Another founder from a company acquired by Facebook is moving on from the social media giant. Brendan Iribe, co-founder and former CEO of Oculus VR, announced in a personal Facebook post that he would leave the company.
“The success of Oculus was only possible because of such an extraordinary team effort,” Iribe wrote. “I’d like to sincerely thank everyone that’s been a part of this amazing journey, especially Mark [Zuckerberg] for believing in this team and the future of VR and AR.”
Iribe co-founded Oculus with Palmer Luckey, who was the lead developer for the company’s flagship VR headset, in 2012. In 2014, Facebook bought Oculus for $2 billion. Luckey would leave the company three years later, following the revelation that he had given money to pro-Donald Trump internet troll campaigns during the 2016 presidential election.
What a ride! We made science fiction into reality and inspired a new industry in the process. Oculus was only possible because of such an extraordinary team and community. Thank you! Now, six years after we launched Oculus and Rift, I'm moving on to the next chapter!
— Brendan Iribe (@brendaniribe) October 22, 2018
Though Iribe was no longer the CEO of Oculus, he was still working on upcoming products up until recently. TechCrunch reported that Facebook recently canceled the Rift 2 headset Iribe was working on, which may have inspired the co-founder’s decision. The higher end Rift headsets do not work without an expensive gaming PC, unlike the company’s more affordable Oculus Go and Quest headsets.
Facebook has lost the founders of several of its acquired properties in recent months, with one constant being reported differences between the founders and Zuckerberg. Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger left the company in September, while WhatsApp co-founders Brian Acton and Jan Koum left Facebook separately over the past year.
Reports surrounding each departure highlighted potential philosophical differences between the founders and Facebook’s visions for each brand.
Acton admitted that he left Facebook because the company wanted to monetize WhatsApp in a way he did not agree with.
Each departure meant Facebook could put its own people in place at each brand. Longtime Facebook employee Adam Mosseri was recently named head of Instagram after Systrom and Krieger’s departures.