Huddle cofounder Andy McLoughlin has left the company to join a Silicon Valley venture capital firm just over a month after fellow cofounder Alastair Mitchell stepped down from his role as CEO to make way for technology veteran Morten Brøgger.

The departure follows a £32 million funding round that valued the British business software firm, which helps companies to securely share documents and collaborate on them, at close to £1 billion as it approaches its 10th birthday.

Huddle founders Andy McLoughlin (left) and Alistair Mitchell (right) ©Huddle
Huddle founders Andy McLoughlin (left) and Alistair Mitchell (right) ©Huddle

A source close to the company told Techworld that there were no rifts between the incumbent CEO and the cofounders but the move may raise one or two eyebrows among the company’s investors.

McLoughlin left Huddle, which is run out of offices in London and San Francisco, in order to join a venture capital house called SoftTech, which backs early-stage technology companies like Fitbit from a small office in Palo Alto.

McLoughlin told the Financial Times that his departure was not linked to moves at the top of the company.  

“I didn’t think I could step back and the company would be in safe hands . . . [but] with Morten moving in, I felt comfortable that everything would be fine if I looked at something else,” he said, adding that joining SoftTech would allow him the “chance to write bigger cheques and the chance to have a bigger impact . . . honestly, a no-brainer”.

McLoughlin is already a prolific angel investor, having backed over 35 firms, including UK-based startups Secret Escapes, a luxury holiday site, and Thread, a fashion technology group.

Meanwhile, Mitchell, who led many of the company's fundraising efforts in the Silicon Valley bay area, stepped down from his role as CEO to become president and chief marketing officer.

Morten was brought in to help Huddle expand internationally and compete with larger rivals such as Dropbox, Box, Google Drive and Microsoft. Upon taking up his position, he told Techworld that he was putting Huddle IPO discussions on hold.

McLoughlin will remain on the Huddle board of directors.