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One of Pinterest’s top product executives, Jon Alferness, has left the company after less than a year

Alferness, who reported directly to CEO Ben Silbermann, just joined Pinterest in August.

Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann.
Pinterest CEO Ben Silbermann
PDrew Angerer / Getty

Jon Alferness, the head of Pinterest’s advertising products who just joined the company last summer, has left.

Pinterest exec Jon Alferness left the company.
Jon Alferness

Alferness joined Pinterest from Google last August as VP of ad products and was temporarily overseeing Pinterest’s entire business after president Tim Kendall left in late November. Alferness went back to running ad products exclusively when Pinterest hired former Square exec Francois Brougher as COO in February.

Alferness was part of a small group of executives who report directly to CEO Ben Silbermann. Lawrence Ripsher, who is also part of this exec team, will now oversee consumer product and advertising product together, part of what the company is calling an “integrated product team.”

Here’s a statement from a Pinterest spokesperson, who confirmed that Alferness is leaving:

“Pinterest helps you discover and do what you love. To deliver on this mission, we help Partners put their ads in front of people who will love their products and services. With this in mind, we’ve built an integrated product team that resulted in a change of leadership. This builds on our momentum and will deliver better products for Pinners and Partners. We would like to thank Jon for all of the work he did for the company and we wish him well.”

Moving both advertising product and consumer product under the same executive might make sense. But Pinterest also didn’t hire Alferness with plans for him to leave after less than a year.

All of the executive shuffling at Pinterest — Kendall out, Brougher in, Alferness out — is made all the more interesting given that Pinterest is expected to IPO sometime in early 2019. It’s important to get these executive teams in place before that process, primarily so people don’t leave midway through, and so there is stability during an important transition period for the company.

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