Uber hires ex-Orbitz Barney Harford as Chief Operating Officer

Dec 20, 2017, 5:38 pm

Aniruddha P.

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Yesterday, Uber’s CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has officially announced via a letter addressing all Uber employees of the world that Barney Harford is the company’s new Chief Operating Officer.

Starting January 2, Barney will supervise global operations, marketing, and customer support teams for ridesharing and delivery businesses of the company. He is the former CEO of Orbitz, having insightful experience in building and managing two-sided marketplaces. Since last October, he was serving Uber as an advisor and has been learning the workflow and developmental potentials of the company.

I have never met a stronger operator or a more thoughtful strategist than Barney. He is able to go deep on key aspects of a business while never losing sight of the big strategic picture. – Dara Khosrowshahi

Dara also revealed that the new Executive Chairman is passionate about transforming the world by using technology. Barney’s favorite engagement areas are marketing, operations, products, and collaborating with engineers over hard problems.

This is the second time they will be working together after in 1999 when Barney went to the U.S. to join Expedia. Then, Dara became the company’s CEO and Barney led its push into Asia. In 2009, Barney joined Orbitz and “went on to turn that company into such a success that I (Dara) just had to acquire it!”

Barney will keep on working on the boards of RealSelf and United Airlines. Dara further gave an insight into the kind of person his new consociate could be: “Barney enjoys skiing, surfing, and photography, and loves classical music. He and his wife Beth Birnbaum have two kids.”

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