Following a report from earlier this week, Expedia chief Dara Khosrowshahi has been named the new CEO at Uber by the company’s board of directors today. He starts tomorrow, taking over from co-founder Travis Kalanick, who resigned from the role in June following numerous major scandals.
Kalanick shared the following statement about the Tarrytown, New York, native who’s been at Expedia for over a decade:
I am excited to welcome Dara Khosrowshahi as Uber’s next CEO. With a deep passion for team building, Dara grew Expedia into one of the world’s most successful travel and technology platforms. Casting a vote for the next chief executive of Uber was a big moment for me and I couldn’t be happier to pass the torch to such an inspiring leader.
In a letter to Expedia employees obtained by GeekWire, Khosrowshahi expressed his warranted fears about the new role:
I have to tell you that I’m scared. I’ve been here at Expedia for so long that I’ve forgotten what life is outside of this place. But the times of greatest learning for me have been when I’ve been through big changes, or taken on new roles – you have to move out of your comfort zone and develop muscles that you didn’t know you had. I always tell people to look for a role where they, as an individual, can make a difference, at a company that is making a difference. I know I can look back at my work at Expedia and say mission accomplished. And I can look forward to Uber and know that I will make a difference, hopefully for the better.
I’m interested to follow Uber’s journey from here on out. Khosrowshahi will certainly have his work cut out for him: besides growing the brand worldwide, taking on well-funded rivals across Asia and leading the charge in autonomous vehicle tech, there are also lawsuits, audits and company culture issues to deal with. This is by no means a job for the weak-willed, and the world will be watching to see if he can truly deliver over the coming years.