Dear Chess.com Community,
Today Chess.com is announcing something big, but also unimportant: One of the world’s top growth equity firms, General Atlantic, has made a major investment in Chess.com. This transaction took place on December 31. We’ll keep the financial details private, but I wanted to speak to you directly about what this means for chess.
First, nothing changes. I’m still CEO. Everyone stays with the company. No one from outside joins our team. We remain an independently operating company. All the same people still work for Chess.com. Our purpose and mission are the same. Nothing is going to change how we work today. Our leadership team will still lead. Our product team will still design the product. Our engineers will still build and scale the product. Our content team will still create the same content. Our support team will still support the same members.
General Atlantic is a great investment company that believes in mission-driven, community-oriented companies like Chess.com. They are major investors in Duolingo. They invested in Slack, Snap, TikTok, AirBNB, Adyen and many others. We are honored to be on that list! We believe they strike the right balance between hands-on to help us navigate these new, great waters, yet hands-off enough not to mess with what we do best: mission, culture, team and chess !
Why are we doing this? One big reason: growth. Far more people are playing, watching and enjoying chess than ever before, and we know it can get even bigger. Our mission is to make the game of chess grow! And as we do that, we will be faced with new opportunities and challenges, and having investors who have led so many great companies down the path will give us the counsel we need to thrive as we share chess with the world. .
So what does this mean for us, the chess community? This is about bringing the game to new people and new places, and about doing the things we’ve always wanted to do. We believe our new partner will help us learn the things we don’t know and reach a wider audience in new ways. We firmly believe that they will take nothing away and add a ton to make our business better and bring chess to more people.
We have been extremely careful in choosing who to join our family from. From the beginning, the General Atlantic team shared their reverence for the game of chess and our mission, and their reputation for helping businesses without negatively impacting them backs this up. We now have a great partner by our side to help us keep doing everything we’ve done but on a bigger stage: making the best possible chess platform, hosting great events like Speed Chess Championships and Pogchamps, chess memes in your feeds , promote tournaments, explain what en passant means, etc. Chess.com is our life and our passion. I hope you continue to trust me as we take chess to more of the world.