Opendoor co-founder Eric Wu announced today that he is stepping down from his role as CEO of the real estate technology company and that Carrie Wheeler will be taking over as chief executive.
In announcing the shift, Wu wrote: “First, I believe that an important driver of shareholder value is the discovery and refinement of product market fit, and I want to spend my days, nights, and weekends delivering products that address consumer needs. Second, and more importantly, I’ve spent countless hours with Carrie, and I know she is the leader and executive Opendoor needs.”
Wheeler will join Opendoor’s board, of which Wu will continue to serve as a member. John Rice, who has served on the company’s board since 2021, has been appointed lead independent director.
In early November, Opendoor launched a new marketplace called Opendoor Exclusives in its Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin markets. At the time, Wu said: “We’ve designed Opendoor Exclusives to be a new marketplace where you can directly buy and sell a home, without any of the hassle of the traditional real estate model. We are doing this by leveraging our nine years as a leading buyer and seller of homes, opening our platform and services, and aiming to bring together hundreds of thousands of our home sellers and home buyers. Today marks a founding moment as we expand our vision to service all homebuyers and homeowners and aim to redefine the real estate transaction forever.”
The moves come after a tumultuous year for Opendoor. On November 2, Opendoor announced it was letting go of about 550 people, or 18% of the company, across all functions.
At that time, Wu said his company was navigating “one of the most challenging real estate markets in 40 years.”
Meanwhile, the company’s stock has taken a massive hit. Opendoor went public in late December 2020 after completing its planned merger with the SPAC Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings II, headed by investor Chamath Palihapitiya. The eight-year-old company closed its first day of trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange at $31.25, “well above the $10 share price at which Social Capital sold shares in an April  initial public offering,” per Crunchbase and Reuters reporting. At the time of writing today, shares were trading at $1.76, only slightly higher than the company’s 52-week low of $1.46. This means that the company is valued at just $1.11 billion, down from a valuation of $8 billion in 2021.
In August, Opendoor agreed to pay $62 million to settle charges by the Federal Trade Commission, which said the company’s claims that it helps people make more money by selling their house to the company rather than listing it on the open market were deceptive.
When it comes to venture capital, Opendoor last raised $300 million at a $3.5 billion pre-money valuation in March of 2019. Over time, it has raised about $1.3 billion in equity funding and nearly $3 billion in debt financing to finance its home purchases. Investors in the company include General Atlantic, the SoftBank Vision Fund, NEA, Norwest Venture Partners, GV, GGV Capital, Access Technology Ventures, SV Angel and Fifth Wall Ventures, along with others.
Founders include Wu and Founders Fund general partner Keith Rabois.