The founder of IOTA speaks on Medium

The founder of IOTA speaks on Medium about his departure from the Foundation

  • The founder of IOTA, David Sønstebø, was dismissed on 10 December.
  • He published an article on the subject on 26 December on Medium.
  • In it he argues that the consequences of the separation were inevitable.

IOTA founder David Sønstebø broke his silence on the issue of his departure on 26 December.

Sønstebø has issued a statement on Medium. In the message, he gave his side of the story about his departure from the Foundation and left public messages for the other members of the IOTA Foundation board.
Technically happy

As far as the public was concerned, IOTA was moving in a positive direction at the end of 2020. In December, the company formed a partnership Immediate Bitcoin on environmental sustainability solutions. On November 30, the platform announced its next generation portfolio, Firefly. In addition, the IOTA 1.5 public test network, called Chrysalis, went online. Behind the scenes, tension was mounting.

The beginning of the end

The first official indication that something was wrong came in the form of a short article on the blog of the IOTA Foundation (IF). In the message, the board of directors and the supervisory board stated that their interests and those of Sønstebø had „considerably diverged“. They thanked him for setting up the entity they were running and wished him entrepreneurial success.

However, on 12 December, an addendum appeared on the blog. The foundation reminded readers that „IOTA is not about one individual“. At the same time, the foundation emphasised the role that David Sønstebø played in the foundation and initial construction of the solution. They also wrote that his departure „changes absolutely nothing“ regarding the strategy and delivery of Chrysalis and Coordicide.

Sønstebø’s response

On 26 December, Sønstebø published his version of the facts about his departure. He first explains that he remained silent at first in order to continue the release of Chrysalis.

Sønstebø claims that what led him to write his article was the inevitable mess created by the IOTA Foundation. His departure, he writes, could have been co-ordinated between him and IF in order to stifle discussions.

Rather than chronicling an „eye for an eye“ attack, Sønstebø points out three salient elements of the development of the project that led to his departure. He focuses on the maturation of the project and the need for a separate CEO/COO. He then focuses on the finances (especially in 2020) and his repeated suggestion to liquidate the foundation in order to keep the IOTA project itself independent of the markets. He also stresses that the suggestion to liquidate was not due to financial problems at the IOTA Foundation. Finally, he describes a panicked board of directors seeing a possible benefit – the creation of new services – slipping through their fingers. According to him, as the founder, they never had this possibility in the first place.

After explaining his side of the story, Sønstebø has farewell words for each member of the board of directors and the supervisory board. For some he has good memories, for others a scathing criticism. And for one: „And M#!DE.“

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