One way to gain ground on a competitor is to poach their best executives. We’ve seen it time and time again, from high-level Tesla employees fleeing for Lyft or Apple stealing Google’s AI talent.
DoorDash, a well-funded food delivery unicorn, is familiar with this method of staffing. The company announced this morning that it has poached its second Uber employee in the last year to join its growing business. Ryan Sokol, credited with leading and scaling Uber Eats, Uber’s food delivery arm, from its inception, has joined DoorDash as its vice president of engineering.
The news comes shortly after the San Francisco-based company hired Prabir Adarkar, Uber’s former head of strategic finance, as its chief financial officer. The company also recently hired chief people officer Sarah Wagener from Pandora, where she was VP of human resources.
Reporting to co-founder and chief executive officer Tony Xu, Sokol will lead the product, infrastructure and data science teams within DoorDash’s engineering department.
“Ryan comes to DoorDash at a critical inflection point in our business following a breakout year,” DoorDash wrote in an announcement. “In 2018 we 5xed our geographic footprint from 600 to 3,300 cities and tripled our valuation to more than $4 billion.”
“We doubled the engineering team to 200+ last year, working on a variety of problems from machine learning applications to logistics to personalizing consumer experiences,” DoorDash added. “This year, we plan to double our team again and continue on our trajectory as the fastest growing last-mile logistics company in the space.”
Six-year-old DoorDash has raised nearly $1 billion in venture capital funding, most recently at a $4 billion valuation, from SoftBank, Sequoia, Coatue Management, DST Global, Kleiner Perkins, Khosla Ventures, CRV and several others.