When confronted with allegations that Snap was misrepresenting important metrics, CEO Evan Spiegel claimed they "don't matter" and it was "no big deal," according to an unsealed lawsuit against the company.Former Snap employee Anthony Pompliano is suing his former employer for preventing him from getting future employment, saying company had a vendetta against him after he revealed to executives several key performance indicators (KPIs) were falsely reported to investors, advertisers and the press. The case had been redacted when it was initially filed in January in the L.A. Superior Court system, but Snap unsealed the documents in a motion on Monday.
Pompliano's findings eventually lead to a meeting with Spiegel and other executives, where Spiegel was "inexplicably enraged throughout the meeting," and barely read the presentation. When Pompliano asked Spiegel if he read the sections on metrics and data, he responded "Yeah, I read those; it doesn't matter."
One major point of contention was over Snap misrepresenting its number of daily active users (DAUs) around mid-2015. Pompliano said the company was telling its investors and ad clients it had more than 100 million daily active users, when its internal programs showed it only had 95 million or 97 million DAUs. The lawsuit states that during Pompliano's presentation, Spiegel said the discrepancy was "no big deal."
In addition, Pompliano suggested growing Snap's international numbers, especially where people have high-levels of social media activity. Spiegel reportedly said, "This app is only for rich people. I don't want to expand into poor countries like India and Spain."
Snap has denied the claims. The company said it was not telling advertisers during mid-2015 it had more than 100 million DAUs. Furthermore, it called the difference in numbers a "minor metrics deviation," pointing out that it had switched recording systems and accounted for the change in DAUs many times in its IPO prospectus."Pompliano now resurfaces after three months of inactivity with new attorneys but the same publicity-hungry game plan," Snap wrote in the motion which unsealed the documents. "In his latest dramatic installment, Pompliano doubles down on the main canard from his complaint — that Snap gave investors misstated user metrics back in 2015 — by asserting that Snap is currently misleading investors. Both halves of that remarkable claim are false. And they regrettably show that the thirstier Pompliano grows for attention, the more he starves his filings of truth and common sense."
Snap said it had no additional comment, and referred back to its recent motion.
However, lawyers for Pompliano said the fact Snap voluntarily unsealed the documents is a sign the company agrees at least some of the claims are true."We're encouraged that Snap has come to its senses and belatedly agreed with us that the complaint in this case belongs in the public eye," Pompliano's lawyer John Pierce said in a statement. "Snap withdrew its motion to seal because it knew it was flat wrong on the law and would lose its motion in court. This attempt to save face by Snap should serve as a reminder that no matter how big you are (or how many billions of dollars you have) in our system everyone has to play by the same set of rules."