A mobile app just out of the gates with $41 million in backing is probably always going to have trouble convincing people that it is “worth it.” But the troubles at Color — the photo-sharing app that shocked the tech world for the wrong reason when it launched earlier this year — look like they might be more than skin-deep. Peter Pham, one of the company’s co-founders and its president — has
apparently left the startup.
The news was first reported in TechCrunch, without confirmation from Pham or the company itself. Separately, Bill Nguyen, another co-founder, told AllThingsD that he had left more than a month ago. “I wish him the absolute best,” he said.
For what it’s worth, Pham still lists the title of Color president on his Twitter profile, but perhaps tellingly he has retweeted to his followers something written by a friend of his: “Father — much more important job than founder.”
Update: We contacted Pham and Color for a comment on the report. From Color’s spokesperson, Melody Serafino: “We can confirm that Peter Pham is no longer with Color. We wish him the absolute best. From time to time Bill shuffles his team, he has a history of it.”
Separately, it appears that Color has ditched its app for Android devices. This launched about a week after the iPhone app went live in March this year, although now it is no longer in the Android Market, and a message on the site reads, “New Android version coming soon, stay tuned.”
Serafino’s comment on the Android app is this: “We are strong believers in the Android platform and we look forward to launching something compelling.”
Pham has been a long-time and experienced participant in the world of mobile and tech startups.
Before Color, he had been the CEO of Billshrink, and had been a VP of business development at Photobucket, the photo-sharing company acquired by News Corp (NSDQ: NWS). Photobucket had a recent new lease on life with a milestone Twitter partnership on its new photo service. In his role as “entrepreneur in residence” at Trinity Ventures, he also served as an advisor to companies like Ustream and Docstoc.
When Color launched in March 2011, a lot of people were shocked at the amount of funding lavished on a mobile app that was relatively difficult to use and devoid of users. Unfortunately, in the three months since then, there have been few improvements on either of those fronts.
One last footnote on this: In March, mocoNews was offered an interview with Pham, only to have it rescheduled several times, with the spokesperson eventually telling us that he and the rest of Color needed to keep “heads down on product.” Seems rather ironic now.