VC changes hit Friendster, Plaxo founders

As Matt Marshall at San Jose Mercury News puts it, “it’s part of life here in Silicon Valley”. Nonetheless, it’s still pretty shocking news. It seems that Friendster founder Jonathan Abrams and Plaxo creator Sean Parker have been ousted from their respective leadership roles. Abrams will remain in a role as company founder, but Parker has apparently been locked out of the company.

The reason? Simple — they weren’t making money fast enough for the VCs.

Think the timing’s a coincidence? Probably not. Turns out former Yahoo CEO (and interim Friendster CEO) Tim Koogle and Google angel investor Ram Shriram are both major investors in Plaxo and Friendster.

This also comes amid rumors that AOL is talking about buying Plaxo.

As Marshall puts it:

The real story of what happened in both cases, of course, will probably remain shrouded in secrecy. But hey, that’s the way the valley works.

via Cynthia Typaldos

UPDATE: Even Joi Ito was surprised about Parker:

As a VC/investor, I’ve seen my share of visionary CEOs who can’t run the company, but we usually try to keep them involved in some way and stay on good terms so we can invest in their next good company. I don’t see how you can continue being a VC in the valley being cruel to serial entrepreneurs.