A BuzzFeed rep confirmed that Cooper is departing, as first reported by the Wall Street Journal, saying, “We wish Frank the best.” According to the Journal, which cited an anonymous source, BuzzFeed’s 2015 revenue fell short of projections by about 20% while the company was on track to hit 2016 sales targets.
Cooper was previously CMO at PepsiCo, where he had worked for more than 12 years before coming to BuzzFeed. Before PepsiCo, he was VP of interactive marketing at AOL.
His exit comes as NBCUniversal doubled its investment in BuzzFeed. NBCU last week confirmed that it plowed an additional $200 million into the digital-media player, after its initial $200 million stake last summer. With the new investment, the two companies have expanded their advertising-sales relationship, under which BuzzFeed will collaborate with NBCU’s Content Studio to create branded content and NBCU will sell BuzzFeed’s ad inventory.
Cooper had reported to BuzzFeed president Greg Coleman, who oversees revenue and sales for the company.