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Rony Abovitz, the founder and CEO of Magic Leap, is stepping down as the head of the augmented reality (ar) startup. The news comes amid a major restructuring at the Plantation, Florida-based company.

Here are the details:

Rony Abovitz
Rony Abovitz
  • In a blog post, Abovitz wrote that Magic Leap is actively searching for a new CEO. He will remain in his position throughout the transition.
  • Last month, the company announced that it would lay off 1,000 employees — around half its workforce — as it outlined a pivot from consumer to enterprise products. Abovitz ascribed the change to disruption caused by the coronavirus. Cartoon Brew reported an exclusive story about the loss of between 80–120 animation jobs.
  • Magic Leap spent years secretively developed its flagship product, the much-hyped Magic Leap One ar headset. The $2,300 kit was unveiled in 2017 and marketed as an entertainment system for the general public, but sales fell short of expectations.
  • In 2018, Business Insider reported that the company’s efforts to miniaturize its technology and bring its product to market was costing it $50 million per month.
  • Abovitz has led Magic Leap since founding it in 2011. Over the years, he amassed around $3 billion in funding, according to Crunchbase. That includes another $350 million this month as it started to restructure.

Read Abovitz’s full post below:

As we’ve shared over the last several weeks, in order to set Magic Leap on a course for success, we have pivoted to focus on delivering a spatial computing platform for enterprise.

We have closed significant new funding and have very positive momentum towards closing key strategic enterprise partnerships.

As the Board and I planned the changes we made and what Magic Leap needs for this next focused phase, it became clear to us that a change in my role was a natural next step. I discussed this with the Board and we have agreed that now is the time to bring in a new CEO who can help us to commercialize our focused plan for spatial computing in enterprise. We have been actively recruiting candidates for this role and I look forward to sharing more soon.

I have been leading Magic Leap since 2011 (starting in my garage). We have created a new field. A new medium. And together we have defined the future of computing. I am amazed at everything we have built and look forward to everything Magic Leap will create in the decades to come.

I will remain our CEO through the transition and am in discussions with the Board with regards to how I will continue to provide strategy and vision from a Board level. I remain super excited about Magic Leap’s future and believe deeply in our team and all of their incredible talent and capabilities.


Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit is Deputy Editor of Cartoon Brew.

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