- Instacart founder and Executive Chairman Apoorva Mehta will leave the company once it goes public, Grocery Dive has learned. On Friday the company announced that Mehta will leave the board. Instacart did not say when an initial public offering might happen.
- Fidji Simo, Instacart’s CEO, has been appointed as chair of the company’s board of directors and will assume the role once Mehta transitions off the board.
- Mehta, who founded Instacart in 2012, has been Instacart’s executive chairman since last August, when he handed over the CEO role to Simo, who has focused on making Instacart a “retail enablement platform,” according to Friday’s announcement.
Instacart’s disclosure that Mehta will be stepping down is the latest in a series of key moves the company has made over the past few years as it prepares for life as a publicly traded company.
Simo initially arrived at Instacart as a board member in January 2021, bringing expertise she developed helping lead Facebook through its high-profile IPO and running the social media company’s main app, including core features like News Feed, Stories, Groups and Marketplace. When Simo took over the chief executive’s role at Instacart just a few months later, Mehta said he was so impressed by her leadership that he felt she would “simply be a better CEO than me for Instacart’s coming years.”
Mehta said in a statement when Instacart announced he was leaving his post as CEO that he planned to “remain very engaged in the business on a day-to-day basis and will partner with Fidji on long-term and strategic moves that will shape the future of Instacart and our industry for years to come.”
But in a statement on Friday, Mehta indicated that he had a change of heart in the time since he gave up day-to-day responsibility at Instacart and no longer saw his future at the company.
“Since I transitioned from CEO to Executive Chairman a year ago, I realized that I want to pursue a new mission and I want to do it with the same singular focus that I had while building Instacart. Stepping off the board will allow me to do just that,” Mehta said, without mentioning what he plans to do next.
Simo is poised to become chair of Instacart as the company retools its operations to keep pace amid rapid change in the e-commerce space. The company recently introduced a package of technologies and services for retailers, known as Instacart Platform, and rolled out new tools to help workers navigate grocery stores more efficiently. It has also stepped up investments in digital advertisements at a time when many grocers are doing the same.
“I look forward to working alongside our retail partners to shape the next decade of grocery's evolution. We'll do this by building on Instacart's already strong foundation and putting our technology in the hands of our partners so we can invent the future of grocery together," Simo said in a statement on Friday.
Instacart is “incredibly grateful to Apoorva for his commitment to growing Instacart and building something revolutionary," Simo added.
Mehta bulked up Instacart’s executive ranks during his later years leading the company. The company brought on Asha Sharma, a former Facebook official, as chief operating officer in February 2021. In January 2021, Instacart hired Nick Giovanni, a former Goldman Sachs investment banker with experience shepherding tech companies through the IPO process, as chief financial officer.
In May, Instacart announced it had filed a confidential draft registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a potential initial public offering.