Canopy, the multi-award-winning digital platform for renters, is announcing the departure of its Founder and CEO, Tahir Farooqui.
Following an accident in August 2020, Tahir had to undergo several surgical procedures to save his legs and will now be stepping down from his fulltime duties to focus on his recovery. Tahir has been instrumental in Canopy’s success to date and will remain on the Board of the company.
Tahir, and the Canopy team, have together built one of the most innovative FinTech platforms in the U.K market. 2020 was a year of solid growth for Canopy. The number of Agent partnerships on the Canopy platform grew by 15x. The number of Renters on the Canopy platform grew by 21x. Following the announcement of Canopy’s partnership with OnTheMarket (OTM), the U. K’s 3rd largest property portal, Canopy expects to close 2021 with 772 Agents and 120,000 Renters. Under Tahir’s leadership, the team has built solid foundations to fuel its user growth over 2021-22.
Chris Hutchinson, the current CFO, will take over as CEO as Canopy embarks upon its next exciting phase of growth. Since joining, Chris has played a key role alongside Tahir in shaping Canopy’s strategy and has been instrumental in delivering the partnerships that are now the foundation on which Canopy can grow. Chris has previously held the role of CFO at Neat Nutrition and has a strong background executing growth initiatives and business development across Unilever and Bupa Global. Canopy will also be welcoming Mark Witherspoon to the team who will be joining Canopy as a Chairman. Mark was a Data Services Director at Zoopla and then CEO of Hometrack.
Tahir Farooqui commented: “After 4.5 years at Canopy, I am energised to announce that I am stepping down as the CEO of Canopy to focus on my recovery over the next 3 months. I am enormously grateful to our investors for their belief in my vision, to my team for their hard work, and to our customers for their trust. We have the foundations in place to become the No.1 platform for Renters in the U.K market.
“The growth we are experiencing is the result of smart, talented, hardworking team working towards our shared purpose - doing work that matters - that has a meaningful impact on the life of everyday renter. It gives me immense pride to be part of our team.
“Renters are the forgotten strand of the financial services and real estate market. There is a reason, Renters are turning to their employers for help with renting costs - never mind buying a home. That financial stress takes a toll on mental health - it's a vicious cycle. Our hope with Canopy is to break that cycle - to build a company, that has a lasting impact on a Renter's financial health and lifestyle”.
Andrew Galloway of West Hill commented: “We would like to thank Tahir for his leadership, resilience and hard work over the past four and a half years. He has built an extremely innovative FinTech/PropTech platform that looks very well positioned to achieve significant traction in the coming years. Tahir’s passion for Canopy has shone through since it was founded and it’s important that he now takes the time to focus on his recovery.
“We’re really pleased to have Chris onboard as CEO, he has played a pivotal part in the success of the business to date and is best placed to lead the team as Canopy accelerates forward to the next stage of the growth strategy.
“Canopy is set to become the number one platform for renters in the UK, looking to fit the everyday pain points that renters face. It is a truly holistic solution for tenants, enabling them to access a range of products and services on a single platform. We’re really excited to continue working with the team”.
Chris Hutchinson commented: “Tahir should be incredibly proud of the platform and team that he has built over the past few years. It shows strength of character to work through the challenges he has faced over the past 12 months and continue to grow Canopy. We are now positioned to accelerate our growth, building on the foundations we have put in place and become the number 1 platform for renters in the UK.
“Canopy’s mission remains the same - to improve the lives of millions of rental households by providing access to tools, services and products that fix traditional pain points for renters and put more money in their pockets.”