Chinese short video platform and TikTok rival Kuaishou announced on January 17 that Chen Dingjia will resign as chief technology officer, as he plans to devote more time to his family and personal affairs. After the resignation, he will still serve as the company’s lifelong honorary consultant to provide guidance and support.
Two senior vice presidents responsible for recommendation algorithms and technology R&D will share the management responsibilities of CTO, reporting directly to CEO Cheng Yixiao.
Chen Dingjia graduated from the Institute of Software of Tsinghua University and is a former classmate of Su Hua, the co-founder of Kuaishou. After working at Tencent for 10 years, Chen joined Kuaishou, taking over most of Su Hua’s technical work, and has been serving as chief technology officer, mainly responsible for technology development, product testing, operation and maintenance, and some new businesses.
Su Hua, Chairman of Kuaishou, and Cheng Yixiao, CEO of Kuaishou, announced Chen’s resignation in a letter to all employees. They expressed gratitude to Chen, praising him for building a technical center and infrastructure that can match and support the needs of different stages of business development. Chen also reserved a series of technical facilities including recommended advertising search engine, multimedia content understanding, audio and video technology, big data platform and large-scale data center. The executives also thanked him for training a batch of professional and technical personnel.
According to a report by 36Kr, Kuaishou’s technical business line is undergoing significant transformation, from a pure support department to taking on the role of exploring commercialization incrementally. Chen’s resignation as CTO of Kuaishou is considered to be the result of the retirement of early executives of Kuaishou and the transformation of its technology business.
In the first half of 2019, Kuaishou’s senior management team issued an internal letter, saying that Kuaishou’s strength was gradually fading and that reactions had slowed down. A target of 300 million daily active users was launched. That year, many executives were introduced to Kuaishou.
The monthly active users of Kuaishou have exceeded 600 million, and among the 1.1 billion mobile internet users in China, its penetration rate has reached 60%. Its e-commerce business that attracted significant attention in the third quarter of last year is also weaker than that of the previous three years. Facing strong rivals like Douyin and WeChat Channels, Kuaishou needs to come up with more independent businesses with strategic value besides e-commerce.