Six months after introducing Juicero to the market, Doug Evans left his role of CEO of the company founded after selling off Organic Avenue in 2012 (that juice company would go on to file for Chapter 7 in 2015). In October, the luxury juice squeezing startup brought former Coca-Cola North America president Jeff Dunn on in his stead. Just last week, the company slashed the price of its appliance nearly in half, down to $400 from $700.
Juicero claimed that it had accelerated plans to drop the device by roughly a year (initially planned to coincide with a followup model), thanks in part to Dunn’s suggestion that the cost per unit of building the product had dropped “faster than we thought.” This week, the company lost another member of its founding team.
Kristina Simmons is stepping down from her role as the startup’s head of marketing and business development at the end of the month. The former Andreessen Horowitz partner will stay on as an advisor, as noted in a post on social media.
The company has insisted that it’s in good health, citing the addition of two recent markets for the product, bringing the total to three (California, Nevada and Arizona). But there’s little question that the Yves Béhar-designed premium juicer was priced prohibitively high for the added luxury of juicing at home without all of the extra fibrous byproduct.
That was coupled with the fact that the produce-sporting bags run $5 to $8 per – which may or may not amount to eventual savings, depending on how much your friendly neighborhood juice bar charges per cup.
A temporary pre-Christmas price cut predictably accelerator sales and apparently helped convince the company to make its price drop permanent. Juicero has had no lack of monetary support, raising around $120 million since launching in 2013, news that was met with a fair amount of derision for some, as a sort of poster child for Silicon Valley excesses.
Whatever the case, 2017 looks to be kicking off with some growing pains for the health food startup.
Update: A company spokesperson reached out to TechCrunch with a statement. She emphasized that while Doug Evans handed over the CEO reigns to Jeff Dunn as we previously reported, “Doug Evans is Juicero’s full time Founder and Chairman of the Board and very active within the company. Doug leads on strategic partnerships and fundraising and is an integral part of Juicero and its mission.” She also said Kristina Simmons’ departure does not leave a marketing department without a leader. “[Juicero] hired Deena Bahri as CMO in July 2015 to guide and scale Juicero’s marketing efforts.” She also wished Simmons the best in her future endeavors.