It is official. Carl Pei, who co-founded OnePlus with Pete Lau in 2013, is leaving the company. Pei posted a message in the OnePlus community forums. Entitled Thank You, the note confirms previous reports that Pei is leaving the business he helped start. “After nearly 7 years with OnePlus, I have made the difficult decision to say goodbye,” Pei wrote.
Pei’s message comes days after media reports surfaced that he was no longer with the company. In his note, Pei wrote, “I’m eternally grateful to Pete for taking a gamble in this kid with no college degree, nothing to his name but a dream. The trust, mentorship and camaraderie will never be forgotten. Thank you for the opportunity of a lifetime. “
As for his next move, he didn’t say much, other than still following his instincts. He wrote, “I’ve never regretted relying on my gut feeling, and this time it’s no different … I’m looking forward to taking some time off to catch up with my family and friends. And then follow my heart to the next. “
The reports that have surfaced indicate that Pei has another hardware company in mind. It could be a new company creating a new smartphone brand. Or it could be a project related to another gadget like a smartwatch or something futuristic.
While OnePlus has grown at an astonishing pace, some of its early vibrancy has given way to methods used by larger and more established organizations. It is possible that Pei felt and dared the energy loss that a start-up has and has decided he should start over now that the OnePlus brand was well established.
In OnePlus, Pei mostly looked at the marketing and brand building, while Pete Lau focused on the product side. Also based in Europe, Pei looked to the US and European markets, while Lau worked from China.
OnePlus fans in India will know Pei from interactions during his community meetings and launches. Here’s his full forum post.
After almost 7 years with OnePlus, I have made the difficult decision to say goodbye.
I grew up spending an enormous amount of time on the Internet, building products and communities. Seeing that ideas could become reality in a person’s mind and affect people’s lives gave me great joy, and I knew early on that this was the way for me.
The world didn’t need another smartphone brand in 2013. But we saw ways to do things better and dreamed 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 with when it comes to flagship smartphones. And with the new Nord product line, this success will continue in new market segments.
I just turned 24 when OnePlus started, and that’s where I spent most of my 20s, and where I grew up too. 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 imagine a more rewarding adventure.
Our community joined the movement before we even had a product, when all we had was ambitions and ideas. From hundreds of you who came to eat ice cream at my place, thousands who attended our launch events and tens of millions who bought our products worldwide; I want to thank you all for believing in us all these years.
And the team. The wonderful people I’ve been lucky enough to fight side by side with. The friendships I have made here are the most valuable parts of this journey. The company is in capable hands with them.
I’m eternally grateful to Pete for taking a chance in this kid with no college degree, with nothing to his name but a dream. The trust, mentorship and camaraderie will never be forgotten. Thank you for the opportunity of a lifetime.
I’ve never regretted relying on my gut feeling, and this time is no different. For the past few years, OnePlus has been my only focus, and everything else had to take a backseat. I’m looking forward to taking some time off to unpack and catch up with my family and friends. And then follow my heart to what comes next.
With gratitude, Carl
OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has posted a suicide note on the OnePlus forum, officially signing his departure from the company.
- A few days after reports surfaced, Carl Pei officially says goodbye to OnePlus.
- Carl Pei co-founded OnePlus with Pete Lau.
- Pei says he is looking forward to taking some time off.