Facebook Libra co-founder Morgan Beller quits to become partner at NFX


Morgan Beller, a co-founder of Facebook Inc.’s Libra digital currency project, has left Novi, the company formerly known as Calibra that was set up by Facebook to commercialize the idea.

Formerly officially head of strategy at Novi, Beller (pictured) has left the company to become a general partner at early-stage venture capital firm NFX. Before starting at Facebook in 2017, Beller had previously worked at Medium and before that as a partner at Andreessen Horowitz, when she says she initially picked up the cryptocurrency bug.

At 27, Bellar has arguably had a stellar career in the tech sector, but the future of her co-creation in the form of Libra remains in doubt as she leaves the project. Its exact status remains at best unknown.

Facebook’s efforts in the space were last in the news in August following the creation of a new product group to overseas payments and related efforts. Called F2 internally, short for Facebook Financial, the group is led by David Marcus, who co-founded Libra along with Bellar. Marcus continues to oversee Novi along with having oversight over all payments services, including Facebook Pay.

Before that, Facebook announced in April that it was abandoning its original plans for Libra and that it had decided to offer a range of currency-backed stablecoins.

Officially, Bellar leaves Facebook on good terms, telling TechCrunch that she realized that her work across Facebook and Medium and a16z “made me realize my favorite parts of projects is that zero-to-one phase and that with investing, it’s zero-to-one all day” with a team she wanted to be part of.

That may be so, but abandoning a project of which you’re a co-founder before it is even launched also may suggest that there are deeper issues at Facebook.

Launching a stablecoin as Libra is now meant to be is not rocket science; as of last year there were more than 200 stablecoins in existence. More recently the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has said that it’s fine for banks to deal with stablecoins, officially giving them government approval as an asset class, so the legalities are more clear as well. All that begs the question as to why Libra hasn’t gone much of anywhere.

Photo: NFX

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