In late March, Facebook’s former CFO Gideon Yu had quit. The rumor about why Yu left was that he was not getting along with Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg. An internal memo went around that Facebook was looking for a CFO that has more experience with a public company.
This is where former Genentech CFO David Ebersman comes in. Genetech is a biotech company that was bought out by Swiss company Hoffman-La Roche for $46.8 billion on March 26, 2009. Genentech is also an investor in 23andMe, a genetics company that was started by Google co-founder Sergey Brin’s wife. Ebersman worked at Genentech for 15 years, but Hoffman already had a CFO making his job much less important.
Below is the full press release from Facebook that AllThingsD was able to get their hands on:
PALO ALTO, Calif.?June 29, 2009?Facebook today announced that David Ebersman, the former executive vice president and chief financial officer (CFO) of Genentech, the pioneering biotechnology firm recently acquired by Roche, will become the company?s chief financial officer.
Ebersman will report to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Founder Mark Zuckerberg. He will oversee Facebook?s finance, accounting, investor relations, and real estate functions. He also becomes a part of the company?s executive management team, which directs all aspects of company strategy, planning and operations. Ebersman will formally start in September 2009.
?We received a lot of interest in the CFO position and had the opportunity to meet with many impressive candidates,? said Mark Zuckerberg. ?We quickly recognized that David was the right person for Facebook. He was Genentech?s CFO while revenue tripled, and his success in scaling the finance organization of a fast growing company will be important to Facebook.?
?After meeting with Mark and the rest of the team, I was thoroughly impressed with everyone?s drive and sense of purpose to help people connect and share,? noted Ebersman. ?Mark is constantly pushing the company forward and he?s assembled a world-class team that is achieving remarkable results both for its users and as a business. I?m excited to join this effort and this new industry.?
Ebersman worked at Genentech for nearly 15 years. He served as the firm?s executive vice president and CFO from 2006 through April 2009, when Roche Group acquired the company. Prior to joining the company?s finance organization, he was senior vice president of Product Operations. He joined Genentech as a business development analyst. Previously, he was a research analyst at Oppenheimer & Company Inc.