Parity appoints Björn Wagner as CEO as Gavin Wood becomes Chief Architect

Rick Steves

Gavin Wood, longtime co-founder and chief executive officer of Parity, has announced he is stepping down from the role. 

Initially founded as EthCore in late 2015 by five Gavin Wood, Aeron Buchanan, TJ Saw, Ken Kappler and Jutta Steiner, the firm added Björn Wagner as a co-founder in 2016 and saw a few initial founders exiting.

In an official statement, Gavin Wood explained that his profile does not match the one of a CEO. “Anyone who has worked with me knows where my heart lies. I’m a thinker, coder, designer and architect. Like many such people, I work best asynchronously; a great day is taking 10 hours straight to think out some problem, prototype something or collapse some disparate thoughts into an article.

“The role of CEO has never been one which I have coveted (and this dates back long before Parity). I can act at being a CEO well enough for a short while, but it’s not where I’m going to find eternal happiness. A good CEO needs to be available to others on a far more continuous basis. They need to enjoy representing the company, both internally and externally. They need to not be bothered by large swathes of their time becoming eaten up in meetings and calls with a plethora of multicoloured boxes on their calendar”, he added.

Parity is on a quest to make Polkadot successful and the Web3 vision real and, from now on, that work will be led by Björn Wagner as CEO, while Gavin Wood, the company’s majority shareholder will remain on the firm as he intends to be working within it for some time to come.

“I saw this essentially as a means of freeing myself up to return to work full-time where I belong, on technology”, Gavin Wood continued, as he welcomed Björn Wagner, dubbed the founder of the Ecosystem Development division, as the new leader of Parity, which “will remain the weird home of people who want to build something incredible.”

Gavin Wood steps down as CEO to become Chief Architect at Parity

The upcoming chief executive of the firm was bound to be someone who Gavin Wood already knew and trusted for many years, Gavin explained, looking forward to his future role within the company, Chief Architect at Parity.

“For me, this means fewer meetings and less time taken up with representing the company externally. I will remain the company’s majority shareholder and retain a title befitting my desired workload: Chief Architect. It therefore means more time to focus on the stuff which I both enjoy and where I feel that I can deliver the most value to the company’s mission.

“I’ll be pointing my regained focus towards exploring how we can contribute to making Polkadot and Web3 more relevant to large swathes of the population. This will begin by helping the community design and build several interesting chain-integrated social primitives which I think are crucial for us to deliver a true Web3 platform.”

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