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Shoes of Prey CTO departs

Mass customisation company Shoes of Prey has announced the departure of co-founder and CTO Mike Knapp (pictured left).

Knapp will step back from the day-to-day running of the business, but will remain a significant shareholder, according to a statement released by the company today.

Knapp helped start the Australian business, which is now based out of Los Angeles, 7.5 years ago. He came to Shoes of Prey from Google, where he worked as a software engineer, and was responsible for developing the mass customisation company’s technology.

The co-founder says he is leaving the company with a solid technology team in place.

“We have a solid team in place with the right skill set in the engineering department. I’m confident in Phil Broyles, the new product manager, who has already made a huge difference in the short time he has been here and Joe Landon, director of engineering, who comes with tonnes of experience. I feel extremely fortunate that the business is at that stage that I’m able to follow my passion for developing and growing early stage startups,” Knapp said.

Although Knapp’s decision to leave did not come as a surprise to fellow co-founders Jodie Fox and Michael Fox, who have known about the plan for several months, his departure is undoubtedly a blow to the business. Shoes of Prey recently closed its Nordstrom and David Jones concessions, in what it called a strategic move, and now operates as a pureplay online retailer.

“It’s a bittersweet moment for us, the business is at the stage where it’s bigger than any of the founders and we’ve always wanted to build something that can exist, run and thrive without us. So the fact that one of the founders is stepping down is testament to that. In saying this, we cannot wait to see what Mike is going to do next, we will always remain close and I’m sure he will be rooting for us from the sidelines,” co-founder Jodie Fox said.

Knapp is planning to take some time off and pursue his passion for startups.

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