Reddit hires first finance head as it prepares to go public

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
James Cook
·2 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Reddit chief executive Steve Huffman - Getty Images North America 
Reddit chief executive Steve Huffman - Getty Images North America

Reddit has kicked off the process of preparing to go public by hiring its first chief financial officer.

The social media site has hired Drew Vollero to run its finances ahead of a float that’s likely to place in New York in the coming years, The New York Times reported.

“Is Reddit going public?” Reddit chief executive Steve Huffman told the newspaper. “We’re thinking about it. We’re working toward that moment.”

Mr Vollero was previously the chief financial officer of Snapchat’s parent company Snap from 2015 to 2018 and most recently worked in the same role at Allied Universal.

He said he hopes to make Reddit, which is a collection of forums known as “subreddits” centered around interests such as video games or politics, more accessible to help sign up more users.

“Reddit can be hard to get at first,” he said. “It takes a little time. We want to shorten that time.”

The site hopes to increase the numbers of advertisers who pay to run sponsored posts along other content on the site posted by its users. Reddit raised $250m (£180m) in funding last month from new and existing investors which brought its valuation to $6bn.

Reddit has grown to be visited by more than 52m people every day and now has more than 100,000 communities on its site.

Mr Huffman testified before the US House Financial Services Committee last month after the site’s WallStreetBets community rallied behind the shares of video game retailer GameStop in January, pushing its share price up more than 500pc.

GameStop | How the trading frenzy started
GameStop | How the trading frenzy started

The executive told the committee that Reddit had not seen any signs of foreign interference inside the community.

“We have analysed the activity in WallStreetBets to determine whether bots, foreign agents, or other bad actors played a significant role. They have not,” Mr Huffman said.

Founded in 2005, Reddit was sold to Condé Nast Publications in the following year. Advance Publications, Condé Nast’s parent company, remains an investor in Reddit.

A $300m funding round led by Chinese technology business Tencent in 2019 sparked concerns among Reddit users that the new investor could exert its influence to censor some posts. Reddit executives have denied this suggestion.