Snap head of sales departs, latest in string of executive exits

by BLOOMBERG

Snap Inc. said its head of sales, Jeff Lucas, is leaving the social-media company.

Lucas, who joined Snapchat’s parent company from Viacom in 2016, was crucial for building relationships with advertisers that were skeptical about spending money on a mobile app for disappearing photo messages — and in some cases remain so. He’s the third leading executive to depart the company in the past four months. Los Angeles-based Snap lost its head of product in January and its head of engineering in November.

Snap won’t be looking for a replacement for Lucas. The company’s advertising revenue now depends less on direct sales following a recent shift to automatic bidding. Regional executives in the U.S. and around the world will now report to Chief Strategy Officer Imran Khan, Lucas’s former boss, Snap said.

Snap last week reported sales that topped analysts’ estimates, causing shares to surge. But some advertisers are still wary of the platform.

“There are two big factors that may lead to subpar performance from Snap compared to other social platforms: a lack of user data and a lack of ad engagement,” said Michelle Steinberg, founder of public-relations firm Domain Integrated, who has worked on campaigns for brands including Toyota Motor Corp.

Lucas’s departure was reported earlier by streaming TV-news network Cheddar.