Dick Costolo, the founder and CEO of FeedBurner who went on to sell his startup to Google for an estimated $100 million, is leaving the company after two years. He's the second founding member of FeedBurner to head for the door this month, after CTO Eric Lunt announced the decision to go last week.
The timing of both departures may have been linked to the expiration of contracts they signed at the time of FeedBurner's sale to Google, according to one source who is familiar with that deal. Reached by phone, Costolo told ClickZ News that is not the case. He said he left because he's looking for something else. He also added that a good team is in place at Google.
At the time of his departure, Costolo was in charge of social media ads, and his responsibilities have already been divided among a group of executives. Google declined to discuss the particulars of the parting, but wished him well.
Costolo founded FeedBurner in 2004 to provide publishers with custom RSS feed services. The company also offered a monetization service for those publishers in the form of an RSS ad network, which was later rolled into Google's AdSense for feeds program one year after the sale to Google.
Costolo is also a media brand in his own right. The former working comedian has lately fulfilled his comedic yen through the medium of Twitter, where he has nearly half a million followers. There, they tune into his humorous utterances, such as, "Yoga instructor tells us to find that calm center that's always in you, but there are bats and an old lady with a saw in my calm center."
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Until March 2012, Zach Rodgers was managing editor of ClickZ's award-winning coverage of news and trends in digital marketing. He reported on the rise of web companies, data markets, ad technologies, and government Internet policy, among other subjects.
December 12, 2013
1:00pm ET / 10:00am PT