Eric Wu Steps Down as CEO to Focus on Marketplace Play as Opendoor Tries to Turn Around its Financial Fortunes

December 2, 2022
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The publicly traded U.S. iBuyer Opendoor has announced a management and boardroom reshuffle which the company says will allow it to focus on growing out is capabilities as a marketplace.

Founder Eric Wu will be stepping down as CEO of the company with his role being taken on by former CFO Carrie Wheeler who will also join the Board of Directors. Wu will be transitioning to the newly created position of President of Marketplace.

The move is designed to allow Wu, the visionary behind the company, to focus on Opendoor's next phase - becoming a marketplace that attracts buyers with its unique iBuying inventory.

“Over several years, I built conviction that our third-party marketplace is what homebuyers and sellers need, will fundamentally change how all homes are transacted and is a critical piece of Opendoor’s future. Thus, I’ve made the decision to focus my time and energy on building and delivering on this vision,” said Mr. Wu. “More importantly, I know firsthand that Carrie’s depth of experience and leadership will be foundational to our success in this next chapter.”

Founded in 2014, Opendoor was the original iBuyer in the U.S. market and has since gone on to become the largest operator in the niche having outlasted rivals Zillow and Redfin in the sector.

The company has been struggling to turn a profit as the housing market has undergone what Wu has called "a once-in-forty-years market transition" over recent quarters leaving Opendoor with many devalued real estate assets on its balance sheet.

The company will be on the lookout for a new CFO to replace Wheeler with Chief Accounting Officer Christy Schwarz serving as Interim CFO in the meantime. Opendoor's latest financial results saw the company chalk up net losses of close to a billion dollars ($928m) on the back of an inventory valuation adjustment of $573 million in Q3.

In addition to the changes at CEO and CFO, Board member John Rice has been appointed Lead Independent Director and President Andrew Low Ah Kee has left the company but will remain a strategic advisor. As a result of these changes, Opendoor has expanded the size of its Board to nine directors.

December 2, 2022
Since March 2020 Edmund's job has been to read about, write about, collect data on, analyse and generally know about real estate marketplaces and the companies that run them. Before that he worked at the aggregator Mitula Group (which became Lifull Connect) for five years.

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