Adobe confirmed Karnstedt is no longer SVP and GM for media and advertising solutions, a position he has held since the 2012 acquisition of search and display ad-management platform Efficient Frontier, where he was CEO.
His exit does not come as a shock, partly because Karnstedt is an entrepreneurial CEO type – not a manager -- and partly because Brad Rencher rules the roost at Adobe's Digital Marketing business unit. One of the architects of the Adobe "stack" strategy, Rencher came into the fold through the 2009 acquisition of Omniture, three years before Karnstedt.
Adobe said in a statement, "David played a significant role in establishing Adobe’s leadership in multichannel ad buying and optimization, as well as bringing broadcast TV online. He built a strong leadership team at Adobe that is well-positioned to continue the momentum. We wish David well in his future endeavors."
Karnstedt was CEO at Efficient Frontier for almost three years, from 2009 to its sale in 2012, prior to which he was an executive in residence at Redpoint Ventures. Before that he held numerous sales leadership roles at Yahoo, including SVP of North American sales. His search industry experience dates back to Overture and AltaVista.
Karnstedt, who did not respond to an interview request, still has a hand in several digital marketing firms. Since December 2012 he has sat on the board of Quantifind, a predictive analytics player funded by Redpoint Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz. Quantifind is based in Menlo Park and co-founded by Stanford grads John Stockton and Ari Tuchman.
He is also on the board at Jumptap.