Business

Overfunded stealth payments startup Clinkle loses COO

Image Credit: Netflix

We still don’t know what exactly the stealth payments company Clinkle is working on (something something revamping the way we pay for things forever), but its drama never seems to end.

Best known for raising the biggest seed funding round ever (a massive $25 million), Clinkle announced today that its chief operating officer, former Netflix CFO Barry McCarthy, is stepping down from the company.

The news comes only a few months after Clinkle laid off almost a quarter of its staff.

“Given the company’s need to focus on product and engineering for the foreseeable future — in other words, until we achieve scale in our operations — we both agree that it’s best for him [McCarthy] to shift his responsibilities to an advising role,” Clinkle CEO Lucas Duplan wrote in a blog post today. McCarthy’s duties will be divided between Duplan and CFO Mike Liberatore (who recently left PayPal to join the company).

Basically, McCarthy was brought in to scale things up — but right now, it doesn’t seem like there’s much to scale.

Duplan notes that Clinkle rolled out its application to employees last month, and it’s bringing friends and family onboard starting today. He expects to bring on “hundreds” of beta testers in the next few weeks, and still expects Clinkle to be available to college students by the end of the year.

Clinkle also announced today that it has received an investment of “several million dollars” from Stanford University. Together with its hefty seed round, Clinkle is said to have raised more than $30 million before even getting its product out the door.

The company is being positioned as a direct competitor to Square, PayPal, and a slew of other mobile payments solutions. But it’s unclear what, exactly, will differentiate Clinkle from the crowd.

“Building the capabilities we need and getting the right people in the right jobs has been a full-time endeavor,” Duplan wrote.

“Like most companies, we haven’t had a 100-percent hit rate, but fortunately, we’ve — well, certainly, I’ve — learned a lot.”


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