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Former Google Executive Takes Over as Pinterest CEO


Former Google commerce executive Bill Ready | Image by Paypal

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Former Google commerce executive Bill Ready took over CEO duties at Pinterest, the image-sharing social network, on Wednesday. Ben Silbermann stepped down from his CEO role after being with the company since he co-founded it in 2010.

Wall Street investors welcomed the change of leadership news by snapping up Pinterest stock after the New York Stock Exchange stopped trading on Tuesday. Company shares climbed by as much as 5% in after-hours trading.

Pinterest was rated as a growth-oriented stock six months ago, but it was also rated as an overvalued investment that could be risky to hold during bear market conditions.

As co-founder and former director of business development, Silbermann will remain at Pinterest as chairman of the executive board.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Silbermann explained that stepping down from his CEO post was the best decision for Pinterest’s future.

Near the end of Silbermann’s time as CEO, he faced backlash regarding allegations of discrimination in the workplace. Since then, Pinterest has reviewed its workplace culture independently and made multiple internal changes to guard against exclusivity and discrimination.

Ready is leaving Google after years of leading its e-commerce division.

Silbermann said in a statement that Ready’s experience in e-commerce makes him a “great leader for this transition” to e-commerce within Pinterest. He was also once in charge of operations at PayPal and CEO of Venmo.

Pinterest’s monthly users peaked at the beginning of 2021 during the COVID-19 pandemic, but now that shoppers have transitioned back to in-person stores, its number of monthly users has taken a dip.

Ready stated that he is not discouraged by this, noting that despite the increase in in-person shopping, “digital engagement remains significantly elevated.”

Whether they complete their purchases online or in-store, Ready is confident that online browsing is the first step most consumers take.

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