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Slack platform product head Jason Shellen is out

He came to the high-profile collaboration startup from Google and Pinterest.

Jason Shellen striking a business guy pose.
Helena Price

Jason Shellen, who has done stints at both Pinterest and Google, has left Slack, where he was head of product for its platform efforts, said sources. He only joined the San Francisco-based startup at the beginning of the year.

Shellen was charged with getting all kinds of services and automation, called Slackbots, on Slack from partners to help businesses and to make its ecosystem robust. At an event this summer, Shellen said in an interview that the goal was to make Slack “the place where work happens.”

Slack has made a big deal of its platform road map, including the creation of an $80 million fund to encourage the development of more third-party apps and bots to make the service more useful to teams. But the company, which has had several acquisition offers from larger players, is facing increased competition from those very same companies now.

At Google, Shellen was best known for his work on Google Reader, the RSS feed product. He has also worked at AOL via Thing Labs. It’s not clear if he is going anywhere.

Shellen is not the only top exec to leave Slack, which has been valued at $3.8 billion. Its CMO/CRO Bill Macaitis left in November, along with its HR head Anne Toth.

I pinged Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield about the departure, but got no reply.

UPDATE: A Slack spokesperson confirmed the departure after I posted this news. “He wound down his time at the company in late December to pursue a path closer to his entrepreneurial roots,” said the spokesperson. Also, Shellen said the same on Twitter.

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