Uber is picking up a lot of ex-Googlers lately – earlier on Thursday, I reported that ex-Google SVP of Engineering Amit Singhal was headed to the ride-hailing startup, and former Google VP of Engineering on YouTube’s ads team Kevin Thompson is also joining the company as VP of Marketplace Engineering.
That means Thompson will report into his former colleague Singhal, Uber confirms, whose new role puts him in charge of engineering on both the Maps and the Marketplace team. Marketplace, for those who might not be as familiar with Uber’s internal divisions, focuses on things like dispatching drivers to specific riders, calculating price and forecasting demand, among other fundamentals core to Uber’s business model.
Thompson spent over 12 years at Google – almost as much as Singhal, who was at the search giant for over 15. His most recent gig was overseeing Google’s engineering team for YouTube Ads, maximizing revenue while also keeping ads tolerable for end users. A large percentage of Google’s YouTube advertising platform is automated, with similar problems to solve in terms of figuring out what ad to serve to what viewer, calculating demand and allocating available inventory, and more.
Uber’s clearly looking to bring some world-class engineering talent with proven track records in at the top of the org to help foster a community ready to tackle some of the toughest computer science challenges in the world.