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AR helmet maker, Skully, CEO and Chief of Staff booted out by investors

TechCrunch TechCrunch 12/07/2016 John Mannes and Sarah Buhr

Anonymous sources have confirmed to TechCrunch that Skully Co-Founders, Marcus and Mitch Weller have been kicked out of the company by investors. Marcus currently serves as CEO of Skully while his brother Mitch serves as Chief of Staff and provided business operations, product management, and material logistics support to the company.

Skully jumped into the tech scene two years ago after a highly successful Indiegogo campaign for the company’s augmented reality motorcycle helmet that lets riders see traffic behind them. The device also allows wearers to play music, receive directions and check weather information, hands free.

The founders have been on a different page than investors regarding the future of the company for quite some time, according to our source close to the company.

Both Marcus and Mitch are on the Skully Board of Directors along with Victor Westerlind from Intel Capital and Nicholas Brathwaite from Walden Riverwood Ventures.

One source we spoke to told us that Skully has only shipped 20 helmets so far.

Reports are conflated regarding cash flow with some saying that the founders are running out of capital.

Rumors have also come to light that the company was simultaneously trying to sell itself and raise a Series B. 

The last straw for Marcus appears to be a botched acquisition by a Chinese company. Skully talent has slowly been poached without direction from the management team.

Marcus’ loyalty to his brother may have ultimately cost him the position. Marcus had been under investor pressure to remove Mitch but did not take action.

Martin Fichter, the current Chief Operating Officer, will be taking over as acting CEO. Martin was previously on the executive team at HTC America. Fichter joined Skully in February and has been heavily involved in providing direction for the company. 

Skully has raised $14.95 million from two investments and an Indiegogo campaign over the last two years.

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