The founders of Instagram are leaving Facebook Inc. after growing tensions with Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg over the direction of the product, people familiar with the matter said.

Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, who have been at the company since Instagram's acquisition by Facebook in 2012, were frustrated with an unusual uptick in day-to-day involvement by Zuckerberg, who is now more reliant on Instagram for Facebook's future growth.

The New York Times earlier reported Systrom and Krieger's departure.

The two built Instagram and sold it to Facebook for US$1 billion ($1.5b) six years ago. Instagram, which now has more than one billion users, is a key driver of revenue for Facebook.

Advertisement