Meta’s Vivek Sharma, the corporate’s VP of its Horizon social VR platform, is leaving the corporate, as reported by Reuters. Meta spokesperson Bryan Pope confirmed Sharma’s departure to The Verge and mentioned that Sharma is leaving to pursue an unrelated profession alternative.

Sharma’s departure is going on at a considerably awkward time for Horizon. The metaverse is a gigantic guess for Meta, with Horizon as certainly one of its centerpieces, however the entire effort turned one thing of a meme final week. To assist promote Horizon Worlds’ launch in France and Spain, CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted a screenshot in Horizon that prominently featured his dead-eyed avatar, which practically immediately turned a preferred joke across the web. Zuckerberg shared idea artwork of a extra detailed avatar a number of days later, however the injury had already been achieved. There’s even a Snapchat filter parodying Zuckerberg’s meme-ified look.

The meme second and Sharma’s departure are possible solely small blips for the corporate’s metaverse ambitions. Meta is charging ahead with new {hardware}, together with a brand new VR headset that Zuckerberg simply yesterday mentioned could be launching in October. And this week, the corporate launched its new Meta accounts that allow you to use a Quest headset with out having to log in to Fb. However the metaverse is proving to be a expensive enterprise thus far. Final quarter, the corporate’s Actuality Labs division reported dropping $2.8 billion.

Sharma’s workforce will now report back to Vishal Shah, Meta’s metaverse VP, Pope mentioned.

“We’re grateful for Vivek’s contributions throughout our Market, gaming and metaverse groups over the past six years and we want him properly,” Pope mentioned in an announcement. “Because of his management, the Horizon product group has constructed a robust workforce with an formidable imaginative and prescient and it’s simply getting began. Meta continues to be a supply for growing nice leaders, and we’re excited to see what Vivek accomplishes in his subsequent chapter.” Sharma didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

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