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Meta exec behind Facebook’s cryptocurrency project to step down

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Marcus, who was previously president of PayPal, joined Facebook seven years ago to oversee social media messaging products. Most recently, he oversaw Libra, a digital currency announced by Facebook in 2019 with the promise of allowing people to easily send money across borders.

However, the Libra project was affected by delays amid scrutiny by legislators and regulatory bodies. Initial concerns focused on Facebook’s potential influence on financial markets, as well as potential privacy risks. Marcus was called to testify before members of Congress on the matter in 2019.

Facebook later changed its name to Libra as Diem. The company also launched a digital portfolio called Novi in ​​a limited pilot in October, but without the digital currency that was initially supposed to be its most important feature.

“While there is still a lot to do right after the release of Novi, and I feel as passionate as ever about the need for changes in our financial and payment systems, my entrepreneurial DNA has been driving me for too many mornings in a row. to keep ignoring it, ”Marcus said in one of a series of posts on Twitter on Tuesday.

The news of Marcus’ departure comes after a particularly tough period for the company’s public image following the publication of hundreds of internal documents by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen.

Marcus ’leadership role will be played by Novi’s vice president of product, Stephane Kasriel. Kasriel is the former CEO of Upwork and, like Marcus, a former PayPal executive.

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