Mark Zuckerberg loses two key Facebook executives

Facebook product chief Cox to exit as focus shifts to messagingMore

Facebook product chief Cox to exit as focus shifts to messagingMore

Zuckerberg wrote that Cox considered leaving years ago to pursue new projects, but he chose to stay in 2016, around the time Facebook began taking heat for acting as a conduit for misinformation and Russian election interference. Both men are long-serving Facebook veterans - Cox was one of Facebook's earliest employees, and Daniels has been with the company since 2011 - and trusted lieutenants of Mark Zuckerberg.

The move comes with Facebook struggling to cope with investigations and complaints over data protection and privacy, and after Zuckerberg's announcement last week of a new focus for the platform.

In a blog post, Zuckerberg said that Cox had been mulling an exit from Facebook to pursue other projects for "a few years". He also built Facebook's first human resources teams and oversaw the strategy for the apps that Facebook owns, Zuckerberg wrote.

Cox was in charge of Facebook's apps including its flagship social media site, as well as Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger.

"This is an important change as we begin the next chapter of our work building the privacy-focused social foundation for the future", Zuckerberg said in the note.

Numerous changes Zuckerberg outlined involve duplicating some of WhatsApp's features in Facebook's other messaging apps.

"Chris is one of the clearest and most principled business thinkers I've met and the diversity of challenges he has helped us navigate is impressive", Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote.

Daniels, who had worked on Facebook initiatives in developing countries, had moved a year ago to WhatsApp, which is more popular than Facebook in many big emerging markets.

It is also interesting to see the head of WhatsApp Chris Daniels leaving Facebook right now.

These two departures come on the heels of founding-executive departures at Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp previous year.

Will Cathcart, vice president of product management, will now lead WhatsApp, and Head of Video, Games and Monetization Fidji Simo will be the new head of the Facebook app, Zuckerberg said.