Strava CEO and co-founder Michael Horvath resigns
The search is on for a new successor at the global activity-tracking giant.
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Michael Horvath, the CEO of online fitness tracking platform Strava, has announced that he is resigning from the company.
In a letter posted to Strava’s press site on February 6, Horvath, who co-founded the company in 2009, said that a search is underway for his successor.
“As co-founder and CEO, it’s only part of my job to ensure we are picking the right path to that destination,” Horvath wrote. “The other part of it is to ensure we always recruit and support the right leaders for the right times.
“I have decided that Strava needs a CEO with the experience and skills to help us make the most of this next chapter.”
Related: Strava apologizes after price hike backlash: ‘We just moved too fast’
This will not be the first time that Horvath resigns as CEO of Strava. In 2013, four years after he co-founded the California company, Horvath resigned to spend more time with his wife, who was battling cancer. He returned as CEO six years later.
Strava has experienced unprecedented growth in the past three years, becoming one of the leading social platforms for athletes around the world.
Last May, the company announced that more than 100 million athletes had joined the platform. Most of that growth occurred during the height of the pandemic, with the number of Strava athletes doubling in size in between 2020-2022.
During its most recent heydey, Strava has rolled out a host of new features, including 3D map features, a new off-road interface to support high-growth trail sports like trail running and gravel cycling, and video uploading.
In late January, the company announced that it had acquired Fatmap, a global mapping platform that, like Strava, had raised millions in venture capital in its quest to become the the Google Maps of the great outdoors.
Not all of Strava’s recent news has been good, however. In December, the company laid off about 15 percent of its workforce, and in the weeks leading up to the Fatmap acquisition, a chorus of criticism rose from around the world in regard to unannounced price hikes to Strava’s premium memberships.
Below is a full copy of Horvath’s public resignation letter.
Dear Strava Community,
This week I let Strava, the company, know that we are commencing the search for my successor as CEO. I feel it is important to share the same news with you, the Strava Community.
When Mark Gainey and I, together with the founding team of Davis Kitchel, Chris Donahue, Mark Shaw and Pelle Sommansson, started Strava in 2009 we set out to bring people together around what they loved to do to be active. Over the years we have grown the team and our community well beyond the expectations we set for ourselves at the time. I am so appreciative of the hundreds of individuals who have joined us over the years in building Strava into what it is today, the service you rely on for daily connection and motivation. I am extremely proud that in my second run as CEO, through the dedication of this team and under my leadership, we have expanded who Strava is built for, invested in people and technologies to help more people find the motivation to be more active, and transformed our business success through the simple principle of making the product better.
I have great confidence that these investments will put Strava and our subscription at the center of connected fitness for many, many more people over the coming decade and beyond. This represents a massive opportunity to help the world be more active and healthier! Yet, as co-founder and CEO, it’s only part of my job to ensure we are picking the right path to that destination. The other part of it is to ensure we always recruit and support the right leaders for the right times. What got us here will not be exactly the same as what will get us there. I have decided that Strava needs a CEO with the experience and skills to help us make the most of this next chapter. The search for Strava’s next CEO is underway and I can’t wait to see how Strava becomes the company and service that motivates the world to move.
Mark and I are as committed to Strava’s future as ever. We’ve got exciting things in store for all of you in 2023. Together with the support of our leadership team and board of directors, I want to ensure that Strava doesn’t miss a beat between now and when we find our new leader.
With deep gratitude,