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LivingSocial Loses Top Sales Exec Mitch Spolan

Another bit of bad news for the Washington, D.C.-based deals company.

Jason Del Rey has been a business journalist for 15 years and has covered Amazon, Walmart, and the e-commerce industry for the last decade. He was a senior correspondent at Vox.

Mitch Spolan, the former Yahoo exec who has led LivingSocial’s sales organization for the past three years, is leaving the Washington, D.C.-based deals firm, the company told some employees this week.

Spolan joined LivingSocial in 2011 as SVP of national sales after spending 12 years at Yahoo. In that role, Spolan inked some of LivingSocial’s largest deals, including discount promotions with retail giants such as Starbucks and Whole Foods. In March, his title was bumped up to EVP of global retail, which is described on LivingSocial’s corporate website as a role that “focuses on growing our relationships with top-tier brands and creating new ways to leverage LivingSocial’s marketing platform.”

“It’s a huge loss,” one current LivingSocial employee told Re/code. “He was really well liked and respected.”

It’s not yet clear what Spolan’s next gig is or if he has one lined up.

LivingSocial spokeswoman Sara Parker confirmed the move. “We love Mitch and wish him all the best,” she said.

Spolan will stay with LivingSocial through May 21, she added; he was representing the company in public as recently as yesterday, when he spoke at an industry event. The company is currently searching for a global SVP of retail to take over some of Spolan’s responsibilities, Parker said.

The departure comes five months after CEO and co-founder Tim O’Shaughnessy announced that he would be stepping down once the company found a new chief executive. But LivingSocial has still not announced a new CEO, and CFO John Bax told Re/code last month that O’Shaughnessy was still involved with the company.

LivingSocial, which is partially owned by Amazon, trimmed its operating expenses by $9 million in the first quarter, but revenue fell 28 percent year over year to $78 million. The company’s $260 million sale of Korean business Ticket Monster to Groupon closed in the quarter, helping LivingSocial to book a net profit of $177 million.

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