Instagram's founders are leaving the company


There was no explanation for the sudden departure and Facebook, which acquired the photo-sharing app for $1 billion in 2012, said it wished them well.

Instagram's co-founders, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger are leaving the company in a bid to explore their curiosity and creativity.

This is astonishing, given when Facebook bought Instagram, it only had 16 employees and its founders, Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom, hadn't worked out how to make money from the service. Building new things, he added, requires stepping back, understanding what inspires them and matching that with what the world needs and that's exactly what they plan to do.

Instagram's two founders are leaving the company they sold six years ago to Facebook Inc.

Camera IconStanford University graduates and founders of Instagram, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger.Picture: Supplied, Instagram. "I'm looking forward to seeing what they build next".

That led to a reshuffling of Facebook's executive ranks, increasing Zuckerberg's ability to influence day-to-day operations. The Facebook boss has become more reliant on the photo-sharing company in planning for Facebook's future, according to the report.

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The app now boasts a user base of over one billion people.

The revolving door raises fresh questions over Mr Zuckerberg's stewardship of Facebook, which he set up in his Harvard dorm room in 2004, but which recently has been mired in a series of scandals over its handling of... Instagram, which now has more than a billion users, is a key driver of revenue for Facebook.

BBC North America technology reporter Dave Lee said Instagram's popularity has soared in a period where use of the core Facebook product has stagnated.

WhatsApp founder Jan Koum left the company in 2014, the same year Facebook bought the messaging app. With more than 2.2 billion users, Facebook is running out of people in the world to sign up for its social network, and can only push so many advertisements into its news feed. Since then, Instagram's reach has ballooned and it has widely been seen as one of Facebook's most successful acquisitions. The issues have started taking a toll on Facebook's business, with the company saying in July that growth in digital advertising sales and in the number of its users had slowed.

If an increase in CEO meddling is behind Systrom and Krieger's departure, expect future iterations of Instagram to be brought more explicitly into the fold with Facebook. The site had about 30 million users when it was purchased in 2012.

That will more than double and Instagram will make up around 17% of Facebook's total ad revenue in 2018. eMarketer has predicted Instagram's revenue to hit $8 billion.