Movers & Shakers: Visualsoft, Nextdoor, Article 10, Hiyacar and more

The mobile marketing industry is ever-changing, and that applies to the people as much as the technology. Movers & Shakers is our regular feature following the hottest hires in the industry, so you can keep track of who’s joined which company, and what they’re doing there.

(Left to right) Vikki Hawkins, Sarah Friar, Karen Carter, Paul Cook, Jonathan Best, Steve Langdon)

Visualsoft appoints head of brand ahead of 20th anniversary
Leading eCommerce and digital agency Visualsoft is preparing to celebrate its 20th year in business soon, and has named former Reach executive Vikki Hawkins to the new role of head of brand. She will lead the company’s brand marketing team, with the aim of strengthening and championing the company throughout the UK.
Prior to taking up the position, Hawkins worked for Reach (formerly Trinity Mirror), the UK’s biggest publishing group, for almost 10 years, where she was head of brand and partnerships for the group’s North East region. At Visualsoft, her focus will be on building on the agency’s existing success, and positioning it as a go-to eCommerce and digital marketing partner for clients, experts and more.
“Visualsoft has achieved an incredible amount over the past 20 years and I’ve admired from afar for a long time,” said Hawkins. “I’ve got a great team around me and some big ideas to continue developing the company’s brand footprint – so can’t wait to join the journey.”
“We’re always incredibly busy helping our clients to grow their brands, but it’s just as important that we practice what we preach!” said Dean Benson, CEO of Visualsoft. “Vikki has exactly the right experience and attitude to ensure that Visualsoft continues to grow; she’s stepping into the role at a crucial point in our journey and we can’t wait to see how she develops our marketing to drive that forward.”
Sarah Friar leaves Square for Nextdoor
Neighbourhood-based social network Nextdoor has found its new CEO in the form of Sarah Friar, former chief financial officer of Jack Dorsey’s payment company Square. Friar will assume the role in December, taking over from co-founder Nirav Tolia, who will remain on as chairman of the board. Shares of Square fell in after-hours trading after news of Friar’s departure broke.
Friar has been described as Dorsey’s right-hand woman at Square, having joined the firm back in 2012. Prior to that, she held roles at Salesforce, McKinsey and Goldman Sachs, where she spent almost a decade. In a statement on her departure, Dorsey said that Friar “steered us through an IPO and helped build a growing ecosystem of businesses that will scale into the future…she has been an amazing leader, partner, and friend, and we are grateful for all she’s done for Square.”
“I met Sarah almost exactly four years ago and knew immediately that she was a special leader and special person,” said Tolia. “From the very beginning of our CEO search, she was the top choice, and the board of directors and I feel exceptionally fortunate and excited for her to lead Nextdoor moving forward.”
Article 10 adds managing director and chief commercial director
Following a period of rapid growth and significant client wins, integrated marketing agency Article 10 has appointed Karen Carter, chair of the International Advertising Association (IAA) as managing director. Carter joins the firm from Adepto, where she was vice president of sales and marketing. Prior to this, she founded Kaos Marketing, and held various marketing and leadership roles at Fullsix Group and Microsoft.
“My background as a marketer places me in a unique position to offer additional expertise and insight that will further enhance the brilliant work that Article 10 delivers to its clients,” said Carter. “It’s also exciting to return to my agency roots and I look forward to the challenge of leading such a fast-expanding business.”
Also joining the firm is Paul Maraviglia, who joins Article 10 as chief commercial director. His most recent role was at MaxPoint, the marketing technology firm acquired by Valassis in 2017, where he was general manager for EMEA. His previous experience includes leadership roles at Undertone, CNBC, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, and the Financial Times.
Hiyacar bolsters team with more senior hires
London-based startup Hiyacar has made another addition to its leadership team, bringing Paul Cook on board as chief analytics officer. Cook, who led JustEat’s international insight team from 2011 until recently, will be leading the development of Hiyacar’s business intelligence and data science capabilities to drive growth for the company.
Cook’s appointment follows on from other recent senior appointments including Sarah Kilmartin, former head of broadcast at Sainsbury’s, and Phil Makinson, co-founder of Kabee. Since exiting JustEat, Cook has been consulting with a wide range of marketplace startups and scale-ups such as Booxscale, Wonderbly, Licklist and Borrowmydoggy, as well as launching his own software-as-a-service venture through SingularityLabs.
“Hiyacar is in the rare position to be building a true peer-to-peer sharing economy and we have the opportunity to shape the changing nature of consumer mobility,” said Cook. “Being part of that journey is exciting – this isn’t simply about disruption in a traditional marketplace, it’s about the evolution of the way we think about transport by creating consumer freedom. Moving people is even more exciting than simply moving product!”
Jonathan Best to spearhead growth at Uberall as chief revenue officer
Location marketing solution firm Uberall has added Jonathan Best to its leadership team in the newly-created role of chief revenue officer. Best, who has been leading high-performing global sales teams for more than 20 years, will be responsible for forging new strategic partnerships for Uberall, as well as capitalising on the growing demand for location marketing services around the globe, especially in the US and Asia.
Best was most recently chief revenue officer at UK-based retail startup Honeybee, and previously held a range of sales leadership positions with Kony, SAP, Oracle and Cordys. He will split his time between Uberall’s newly-opened London offices, as well as the company’s headquarters in Berlin and offices in Amsterdam, San Francisco, Paris and Cape Town.
“Jonathan has an outstanding track record of achieving high sales and revenue growth by building strong, highly-engaged sales forces with a very client-focused approach; this experience will be invaluable as we continue to ramp up our global operations,” said David Federhen, co-CEO of Uberall. “By focusing on expanding our enterprise business, breaking into new markets, and forming closer bonds with partners and customers alike, Jonathan will play a pivotal role in our future growth plans. We are delighted to welcome him to the Uberall team.”
Former Comcast director joins data tech startup SBDS
Steve Langdon, former director of international market development and business insight at Comcast, has joined the London office of data tech services provider SBDS as vice president of business development for Northern Europe. Langdon will play a central role in the company’s ambitions growth plans, and will be tasked with ramping up client-direct efforts and strengthening the firm’s relationships with partners including Salesforce, Adobe and Deloitte.
Prior to his role at SBDS, Langdon worked at Comcast Technology Solutions international division, where he built a market development team including consultancy, sales engineering and data insight. Before joining Comcast, he was global director of the video strategy consultancy division at Ooyala.
“I’m delighted to be joining SBDS at such an exciting time for the company,” said Langdon. “There is huge demand for their unique and powerful services, helping advertisers and publishers get the most value out of their customer data assets to drive ROI and build better consumer experiences. I’m looking forward to hitting the ground running and continuing the great work of the team here in London.”