UPDATE: Pinterest has hired Walmart CTO Jeremy King as its Head of Engineering ahead of the company’s upcoming IPO. Pinterest is seeking a valuation of at least $12 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“Not only is Jeremy a respected engineering leader, but from the moment we met him, we knew his values around putting the customer first were aligned with our own focus on Pinners,” Ben Silbermann, CEO of Pinterest, said in a statement. “As we build products to inspire people to create a life they love, Jeremy’s technical experience and leadership are a perfect combination to build a visual discovery engine for all.”
Walmart Chief Technology Officer Jeremy King is leaving the company, according to a memo obtained by CNBC. King has not announced his future plans, but the memo noted that he will be starting a “new adventure” in the near future. Fiona Tan, SVP of Customer Technology, will step up to an “elevated role” following King’s departure on March 29, as the retail giant searches for a permanent replacement.
King has overseen the rapid growth of Walmart’s tech offerings since he joined the retail giant eight years ago. He was hired during the inception of what would come to be known as Walmart Labs, and has led the division as it made more than 10 acquisitions, opened four new offices and formed partnerships with companies including Microsoft and Google.
Walmart has put an emphasis on developing its technological prowess over the past year with initiatives including:
- Launching a number of apps that assist with tasks including tracking inventory, updating prices and determining options for returned merchandise;
- Adding four additional delivery partners and 2,000 technology experts to help expand grocery delivery at 1,600 stores by the end of 2019;
- Opening an AI-focused retail lab inside a Long Island store, where the retailer is testing out capabilities that can empower associates and improve the shopping experience;
- Rolling out in-app maps to help shoppers find products and mobile checkout devices that let associates handle transactions on the floor; and
- Acquiring Aspectiva, an Israel-based natural language processing startup, which is working with Store No. 8, the site of many Walmart technology tests, to improve chatbot capabilities.