honestbee CEO Joel Sng steps down, LG scion Brian Koo to be interim CEO

honestbee CEO Joel Sng steps down, LG scion Brian Koo to be interim CEO

2 -min read
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2 -min read
Listen to this article

CAPPING speculation of a leadership reshuffle, honestbee co-founder Joel Sng has stepped down as CEO, the grocery delivery startup announced on Thursday.

The startup named Brian Koo, founding managing partner of Formation Group, as interim CEO effective from Thursday.

Mr Koo is prominently known as the grandson of the founder of LG, the Korean electronics giant. Formation Group, a US-based venture fund, is one of honestbee's key backers. 

The reshuffle was reported earlier on Thursday afternoon by The Straits Times, which cited an email Mr Sng sent to honestbee employees about his intention to resign.

In the email, Mr Sng had reportedly named a new management team: Roger Koh as chief financial officer, Victor Chow as chief operating officer, co-founder Jonathan Low as chief technology officer and Varian Lim as chief of staff.

Mr Sng was said to have written in the email that it was time for him to "make way for someone who can bring our company to the next level". 

A report by TechCrunch on Wednesday night had said that Mr Sng was fired from the startup and vacated his desk on Tuesday. 

In honestbee's statement on Thursday, Mr Sng expressed confidence in Mr Koo's leadership: "Brian has been our earliest supporter and a key investor. He was also instrumental in helping us define honestbee's purpose and mission from day one."

Likewise, Mr Koo thanked Mr Sng for his contributions. "I will be working with the executive team to conduct an in-depth review of our business to focus and align our strategic interests across our various geographies and verticals, and take the opportunity to articulate a clear vision for the future of honestbee," he said in the statement. 

The leadership change comes after a series of adverse developments at the company. On Tuesday, it announced that it would lay off 10 per cent of its global headcount and had stopped its services in Hong Kong and Indonesia, as well as its food vertical in Thailand.

The company also suspended services in the Philippines and Japan, along with certain partnerships in other markets.

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