Diem co-creator leaving Facebook for Planet Labs

Kevin Weil has previously said that the launch of the Facebook-backed stablecoin would be “a journey of years and decades.”

Kevin Weil, the vice president of product at Facebook’s digital wallet unit and one of the creators of the Libra token, now called Diem, will be leaving the social media giant.

In a Twitter thread today, Weil said he would be leaving Facebook after almost three years to become the president of product and business at San Francisco-based space and analytics company, Planet Labs. He was one of the leaders of the social media firm’s digital wallet unit — once called Calibra, now Novi — in addition to being behind the Facebook-backed Libra token, now Diem.

“Imagine instead if financial infrastructure was built on a regulated, open, interoperable protocol, modeled after the internet — one with low barriers to entry that spurred innovation globally,” said Weil. “That’s what we set out to create with Diem, and I still deeply believe in that mission.”

He added:

“The digital wallet we’re building at Novi, in combination with other interoperable Diem wallets being built by companies big and small, can change billions of lives for the better.”

Describing himself as a “math and physics nerd since grad school,” Weil was reportedly already a fan of Bitcoin (BTC), having looked into the cryptocurrency as early as 2015. He currently serves as a board member for The Nature Conservancy as well as Strava, an exercise tracker using social networks.

First announced in June 2019, Libra had its share of regulatory and technical road bumps. Some lawmakers in the European Union proposed measures to block the rollout of the token, citing concerns that it could undermine the monetary sovereignty of countries. Switzerland’s financial watchdog has not approved Diem’s payment system license, and the European Central Bank has demanded veto power from EU lawmakers regarding private stablecoin projects.

The token has yet to be launched in any country, though Facebook has said it plans to release the stablecoin sometime this year. 

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