Chess.com has launched a search for its new CEO. Current CEO, Erik, co-founded Chess.com in 2006 with his friend and co-founder Jay, and for 17 years has grown the company from an idea to the number-one chess platform with more than 125 million members.
Erik announced that he will be stepping down later this year when a replacement has been found. Per the announcement video, Erik gave the following reason:
“For more than 20 years, I have been working in chess which has taken all of my time and focus. I have never had the mental space to actually pursue my dream of becoming a chess master. I’m about 1800 online, and my USCF rating is 1665. I want to focus on studying the game rather than building the community and I hope to achieve a rating of 2200 and the title of master.”
When Erik was asked if he was influenced by GM Magnus Carlsen‘s abdication of his world chess championship title, he responded: “Actually, yeah. I’ve had a chance to really put myself in Magnus’ shoes in the past—to literally feel like I was him in certain moments, and I resonated with his mentality. I’ve already achieved everything I want to as CEO, and now it’s time for me to focus on other chess-related pursuits.”
Chess.com has posted an open application for the CEO position. It is open to anyone who might be interested in leading the world’s largest chess community. Applicants must be rated at least 1600 in online chess, have 10+ years of management experience in tech or gaming, and not have an MBA from Harvard.
If you are interested, please apply here.