OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has confirmed his departure from the company after nearly 7 years. The world wasn't aware of a new player in the smartphone race, it was still Apple and Samsung back then. But OnePlus grew to become a household name in the years to come and now it holds a prominent place in the premium smartphone segment around the world. This long journey, with its fair share of ups and downs, may seem like an overnight success and one of the core team members who saw it all is Carl Pei.
The co-founder of a young and vibrant company, Carl Pei has decided to part ways from his successful startup (or a division of a larger conglomerate BBK Electronics). Pei, in an emotional letter to fans and the team, confirmed the rumours that had started a few days ago. It came as a surprise and no one saw it coming. But it's happening nevertheless.
While reports suggested Pei would now take this time to start a new venture, details are scarce at the moment. But the former director of OnePlus said he wishes to catch up with his family and friends and then follow his heart to what's next.
Carl Pei's farewell note
After nearly 7 years at OnePlus, I've made the difficult decision to say goodbye.
I grew up spending tremendous amounts of time on the internet, building products and communities. Seeing that ideas in one's mind could be turned into reality and impact people's lives gave me lots of joy, and I knew early on that this was the path for me.
The world didn't need another smartphone brand in 2013. But we saw ways of doing things better and dreamt of shaking things up. Better products. Built hand in hand with our users. At more reasonable prices. Fast forward to today, and OnePlus is a strong force to be reckoned when it comes to flagship smartphones. And with the new Nord product line, this success will continue into new market segments.
Having just turned 24 when OnePlus started, it's where I spent most of my 20s, and also where I grew up. From nervously interviewing my first employee, to facing severe stage fright the first time I presented a product, to learning how to manage a team... The journey has been real. The things we've accomplished and learned, I can't begin to imagine a more rewarding adventure.
Our community joined the movement before we even had a product, back when all we had were ambitions and ideas. From having hundreds of you show up to have ice cream with me, thousands attending our launch events, and tens of millions purchasing our products worldwide; I want to thank you all for believing in us throughout all these years.
And the team. The amazing people that I've been fortunate to fight side by side with. The friendships I've made here are the most precious parts of this journey. With them, the company is in capable hands.
I am eternally grateful to Pete for taking a chance in this kid without a college degree, with nothing to his name but a dream. The trust, mentorship, and camaraderie will never be forgotten. Thanks for the opportunity of a lifetime.
I've never regretted trusting my gut feeling, and this time it's no different. These past years, OnePlus has been my singular focus, and everything else has had to take a backseat. I'm looking forward to taking some time off to decompress and catch up with my family and friends. And then follow my heart on to what's next.