The man leading Apple’s iAd program, Andy Miller, is leaving the company, Kara Swisher at All Things D reports.
He will be taking a job at Highland Capital as a partner.
Miller was reporting directly to Steve Jobs. He came to Apple when it bought his mobile ad company, Quattro Wireless for $275 million in January of 2010.
iAds are a change of pace for Apple, and it’s unclear how successful they’ve been. Initially, Apple charged $1 million for brands that wanted to run iAds. That was not something advertisers were interested in, and the prices have since been slashed.
This is the third high level executive to leave Apple this year. Ron Johnson left his post as the head of retail operations for JC Penney. Bertrand Serlet, who led the Mac OS left earlier.
We wouldn’t read too much into these departures. Johnson wanted to be a CEO. Serlet wanted a break, and Miller just came to Apple via acquisition. It makes sense he wanted to leave after getting a big payday.
Of course, it’s bad sign for iAds overall. The prices are falling, its top executive has left, and during Steve Jobs’ last major speech he didn’t mention iAds once. In fact, he took a swipe at advertising.