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Apr 15, 2021

Shopify is losing 3 top executives amid social e-commerce boom

Shopify losing 3 top executives

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Shopify Inc. is about to say goodbye to three top members of its leadership team.

The Canadian tech darling’s chief executive officer announced the departures in an online memo Wednesday.

Chief Technology Officer Jean-Michael Lemieux, Chief Talent Officer Brittany Forsyth and Chief Legal Officer Joe Frasca will all transition out of their current roles in the coming months, Tobi Lutke said in the memo.

“Each one of them has their individual reasons but what was unanimous with all three was that this was the best for them and the best for Shopify,” he said, adding “we need to remember that everyone will leave at some point and that’s totally OK.”

The memo did not provide any indication of who is line to take on those three senior titles.

The departures come shortly after Shopify went through another management shuffle in the fall of 2020. At the time, Craig Miller left his post as chief product officer.

Shopify, which was founded in 2006, is at the forefront of a global e-commerce boom.

On Wednesday, famed stock picker Cathie Wood told BNN Bloomberg Shopify may one day be as big as online retail giant Amazon.com Inc.

She said the Ottawa-based company is better positioned to take a leading role in social e-commerce sales as more people turn to platforms like Instagram and Twitter to make purchases.

"We're trying to figure out how Amazon is going to deal with this notion of individuals seeing something on Instagram or elsewhere on Facebook or on Twitter, or on Snap and just buying there," Wood said. "That's a Shopify-enabled commerce opportunity and we think it's going to be big." 

U.S. social e-commerce sales are forecast to rise 34.8 per cent to US$36.09 billion this year and should account for about four per cent of all online retail, according to industry data tracker eMarketer.

Shopify’s stock has more than tripled in value since bottoming out in the early days of the pandemic as the e-commerce platform helped many of the world’s brick-and-mortar retailers facilitate online sales.