Pipe, an alternative financing platform that was last privately valued by investors at $2 billion, has announced its new chief executive, an appointment that comes months after the company’s three co-founders stepped down from their posts in a stunning, unusual shake-up.
The new chief executive, Luke Voiles, is joining Pipe after working as the general manager of Square Banking at Block, formerly Square. He was also the CEO and president of QuickBooks Capital.
Voiles’ role will begin on February 20. He is also joining the board of directors, replacing Pipe former co-CEO Harry Hurst as vice chairman. Albert Periu, Zilch USA CEO, is also joining the board, for reasons unknown. Voiles, through a spokesperson, declined to be interviewed regarding the transition and instead pointed TechCrunch to a press release as a statement on the news.
What we do know is that Voiles has experience working in the loans business, which is precisely what Pipe is looking to disrupt. Square Loans, per the release, has handled over $1 billion per quarter in loan volume; QuickBooks Capital’s lending business scaled to $2 billion in loans originated. Indeed, Pipe was looking for a “veteran leader” after all.
Josh Mangel, Pipe founder and co-CEO, temporarily assumed the role of chief executive back in November. Mangel is now moving to the executive chairman position. “I will focus on what I do best: building and driving strategy for Pipe’s long-term product vision to be the global platform for all revenue,” Mangel wrote.
The tone blends similarly to what the founding team said back in November when they announced they were leaving their posts; co-founder and former co-CEO Harry Hurst then told TechCrunch that the trio were “0-1 builders, not at-scale operators.” He said the company’s revenue was growing year-over-year and that the company had five years of runway. Hurst, notably, did not offer comment in the provided statement sent to the press.
On Twitter, though, Hurst reflected on his time as a co-founder of Pipe: “to every single one of you that has been a part of this journey so far, our team, our customers, and our investors – thank you.”
The transition hasn’t been without some drama, though. After announcing the founding team would be leaving, allegations surfaced that Pipe made about $80 million in loans to a few crypto mining companies and that the loans were written off when one or more of these companies went out of business.
The amount of the loans and the writing off of them was denied through a company spokesperson who did say that Pipe “has provided access to financing to crypto mining hosting companies,” but declined to say if the company lost any money on those transactions.
TechCrunch reporter Christine Hall contributed to this story.
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