Amazon Loses Stanza Co-Founder Neelan Choksi

A smartphone reading pioneer is leaving Amazon. In a short note, Stanza co-founder Neelan Choksi announced today that he was leaving Amazon–ending his relationship with Lexcycle, the company that developed the Stanza reader.

We first interviewed Choksi (pictured, via) in September 2009, talking about the 325,000 users that read books and magazines on Stanza–a digital reader for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Within a year, users swelled to the millions. In April 2009,, Inc. acquired Lexcycle. In addition, Choksi spoke at our eBook Summit last year.

Here is an excerpt from Choksi’s departure letter: “It saddens me that by doing so, I will also end my formal relationship with Stanza, and that I won’t be working with Marc and Abe. Both are truly gifted technologists, and I have been spoiled getting to work with them through 5 companies over the past decade. I have a tremendous amount of passion for Stanza and am truly sad to no longer be working on a project that has had such an amazing effect on an industry and for our nearly 4 million users worldwide. This decision did not come easily.”