Head Of Facebook’s Wallet “Novi” Is Leaving The Company

Meta (formerly Facebook) has spent years building its digital wallet, “Novi”, with plans to launch its stablecoin cryptocurrency called “Diem”. However, David Marcus – board member of Diem and Head of Novi – recently announced that he is leaving the company.

David Marcus Steps Down

The co-founder announced his resignation over a Twitter thread on Tuesday, detailing his reasons for stepping down. He said he’d had a change of heart and that his “entrepreneurial DNA” is nudging him away from the project.

“The one thing I’m the proudest of during my time here is the amazing kickass team we’ve assembled over the last three years. This is the most resilient, passionate, determined and talented group of humans I’ve ever worked with.” — David Marcus

Meta (FB) Executive and Diem Co-Creator David Marcus Is Leaving Company - Bloomberg
David Marcus. Source: Bloomberg

Marcus spent seven years working with Meta. He was its Vice President of messaging products in 2014, before co-creating Diem and leading Novi in 2018. When first created, “Novi” was known as “Calibra,” but Marcus decided to rebrand in 2020 due to previous “confusion”.

Stephane Kasriel – former CEO of Upwork – will serve as the new leader of NOVI. Incidentally, Kasriel was a co-founder of PayPal, and Marcus is a former CEO of the same company.

Novi’s Future

The Novi chief’s departure comes on the heels of significant developments for the digital wallet and Meta’s venture into digital assets. Facebook’s rebranding to “Meta” is meant to represent its adoption of the Metaverse, a new world of social connection based on AR and VR technology.

This August, Diem secured licenses in nearly every US state following a history of regulatory trials and public aversion to the project. The original plan was to create a “global decentralized currency” of their own. However, the group changed course to turn Diem into a fiat-pegged stablecoin.

But regulators haven’t let up their pressure. Last month, anti-crypto senators, including Elizabeth Warren, insisted that Facebook is untrustworthy for hosting a global payments network. In addition, they cited the company’s disrespect for other private consumer data as a disqualifier.

Novi has refused to give up until now, assuring regulators that Diem is separate from Facebook. The association called Diem “the best stablecoin project the US government had ever seen.”

Marcus’s resignation follows a list of other executive departures from the project. While co-founder Kevin Weil left in March, two top engineers moved on another crypto project last month.

“I remain as passionate as ever about the need for change in our payments and financial systems,” said Marcus.

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