Facebook’s Longtime Communications Director Larry Yu Departs To Join Upstart PR Firm Pramana

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Larry Yu, the public relations executive who has headed up Facebook’s corporate communications operation for five years and helped steer the company through the publicity blitz surrounding its IPO, is leaving the social networking company. He announced his departure this morning in a post on Facebook, writing:

“Nearly five years ago, I joined some friends at a privately-held company called Facebook to help a small team scale and expand upon the company’s story. That journey was, in a word, crazy. And fun. Terrifying. And gratifying. So I’m off to do it again. I’m joining my friends Brandee, Brian and Sean to help build The Pramana Collective, a project-focused communications consultancy that works with cool companies.”

Yu is not the only tech PR big wig on the roster at the Pramana Collective, which first emerged earlier this spring. The Brandee he refers to above is of course Brandee Barker, who headed up Facebook PR from 2006 to 2010; Brian is Brian O’Shaughnessy, who previously led communications at Skype after four years at Google; and Sean is Sean Garrett, who previously headed up PR at Twitter.

Sean Garrett wrote in a post on his personal blog that Yu will be joining Pramana as a partner next month, and added a few details on the specialties he’ll be bringing to the firm:

“Brian, Brandee and I have all worked with Larry in the past, and we know that his close-to-20 years of experience is a perfect fit for The Pramana Collective and our clients. Beyond being a thoughtful guy who is universally liked and respected, Larry knows how to navigate companies through chaotic growth stages with confidence and calm. And we all admire how he makes financials, process and operations look easy, maybe even fun (well, almost).”

It’s a loss for Facebook, to be sure, but a big gain for the startup world. We’ll certainly be watching to see how Pramana shapes the conversation as it takes on clients.