Lehi-based Ancestry has announced that CEO Tim Sullivan is stepping down and will become chairman of the company’s board of directors effective Oct. 1. Howard Hochhauser, the company’s chief financial officer and chief operating officer, will assume the role of interim CEO as the company conducts a search for a permanent replacement.
Ancestry also said that it has delayed its previously announced decision to go public with its stock. In June, Ancestry officials said that they expected the company’s initial public offering to happen before the end of the year. The latest announcement did not specify when the IPO, which analysts estimate could value the company for as much as $3 billion, might occur.
Ancestry was founded in 1983 and currently employs over 1,600 in its Lehi and San Francisco operations.
In his time as CEO, Sullivan has seen the company grow into a recognized world leader in family history, overseen its transformation into the world’s largest consumer genomics provider and grown revenues to what is expected to be in excess of $1 billion for 2017.
“The last 12 years at Ancestry have been a joy for me, but I believe it’s the perfect time to find the right person to lead the company going forward,” said Sullivan. “We’ve assembled a world-class management team, have an exciting strategic roadmap and see tremendous potential ahead. I’m also pleased to pass the baton when our company’s performance is so strong.”
“Ancestry subscriber growth is at a four-year high, AncestryDNA is the world’s largest consumer genomics service, and with 40 percent revenue growth in Q2 and approximately 30 percent growth forecasted for the full year, our financial performance remains strong,” Sullivan continued. “As board chair, I look forward to staying actively engaged with the company and supportive of the management team as they execute against our long-range plans. Howard and this team are completely ready to move the company forward.”
“I want to thank Tim for his leadership over the last 12 years and for his future contributions to the company,” said Mike Bingle, managing partner at Silver Lake partners, a minority stakeholder in Ancestry. “The company has a strong management team in place, enabling Howard to step forward and ensure that Ancestry continues to advance its strategic vision while we conduct a thorough search for the next CEO,” continued Bingle, who is also sits on Ancestry’s board of directors.
“Having been with the company and in our Utah home for close to a decade, I am confident in saying that our position as a business has never been stronger,” said Hochhauser. “Tim leaves a great legacy at Ancestry and I have highly valued our partnership. Moving forward as interim CEO, I’m looking forward to working with our deep and talented management team as we continue to execute on our growth plan and assure a smooth leadership transition.”