Here’s What to Know as Square’s CFO Prepares to Leave


Oct. 22 2018, Updated 6:30 a.m. ET

Units have their own leaders

Square’s (SQ) longtime CFO, Sarah Friar, is set to leave the company in the coming months. Although the surprise departure of the finance chief shocked investors and triggered a sell-off in Square shares, Square CEO Jack Dorsey has downplayed the loss.

While Friar’s contribution to Square’s success is undeniable, Dorsey says no single individual has been the brain of the company, meaning that Friar’s departure won’t cripple Square. According to Dorsey, Square’s structure is organized in such a way that its various units have their own leaders, who are each responsible for execution.

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Dorsey as dual CEO

Friar has been with Square since 2012, leading the company through its public listing in November 2015. Her role as second-in-command is thought to have afforded Dorsey the flexibility to continue in his position as dual CEO, running both Square and Twitter (TWTR), the social media company that finished the second quarter with 335 million subscribers globally.

Friar is leaving Square to become the CEO of a social network company known as Nextdoor. She is expected to stay with Square until December to ensure a smooth transition.

Square is broadening its offerings

Friar’s departure comes at a time when Square has sought to broaden its offerings, recently entering the consumer lending market. Square ventured into the consumer lending business a few months after PayPal (PYPL) sold its US consumer credit business to Synchrony Financial (SYF) in a deal valued at ~$7.6 billion.

Square suffered a $5.9 million net loss in the second quarter, an improvement from its $16 million loss a year earlier. Online lender LendingClub (LC) posted a $60.9 million loss in the second quarter.


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