Rubicon Project’s President Is Among Several Executives Leaving the Company

Greg Raifman is part of the exodus

In recent months, Rubicon project has let go of 19 percent of its staff and closed an office in Toronto.
YouTube: Robert Cooper

The president of Rubicon Project and several other key executives are leaving the ad-tech company as it aims to further narrow its business.

On Tuesday, Rubicon Project president Greg Raifman announced plans to resign and pursue “an exciting opportunity” while staying on the company’s board of directors. Since Raifman joined the company in 2013, it has tripled in size, growing to manage more than $1 billion in annual advertising. In 2014, it debuted on the New York Stock Exchange, and as of Wednesday afternoon was trading at $8.32 per share, with a market capitalization value of $411.7 million

The news comes after a string of setbacks for the company. Over the past few months, Rubicon Project has cut back on personnel and offices. In November, it announced plans to lay off 19 percent of its workforce (125 employees), and in January, it shuttered its “intent marketing” unit while closing down an office in Toronto.

In an open letter to employees, CEO Frank Addante said the departures are part of a restructuring plan the company announced in November. While he didn’t disclose the names of those leaving, Addante said the moves are meant to “further streamline operations, facilitate faster decision-making and enable the company to be more agile.”

“This management restructuring is the final step in our restructuring initiative and will enable us to reallocate resources to invest in growing our marketplace, as well as technology and R&D including mobile, video, orders and our consumer initiative,” Addante wrote.

According to the CEO, Rubicon Project currently has nearly $200 million in cash on hand. The company’s mobile ad exchange saw $300 million in the past year, with video demand expected to grow past $100 million by the end of 2017. The company is expected to report its next quarterly earnings in March.

In February, The Wall Street Journal, citing anonymous sources, reported that Rubicon Project was exploring a potential sale of the company. The firm isn’t the only ad-tech player facing challenges. In January, Rocket Fuel announced plans to lay off 11 percent of its staff.

In a farewell letter to employees, Raifman recalled the company’s transformation to keep up with the evolution of mobile advertising.

“In the years to come you will undoubtedly face many new challenges and experience many new successes,” Raifman wrote. “During these times, I ask that you remember how far you have come together as a team. When eyeballs began shifting away from desktop, you built one of the fastest growing mobile businesses in the world. When buyers demanded transparency and accountability, you built one of the most trusted marketplaces in the business. At each turn, you dug deep and delivered. It is in the DNA of this company to win.”