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Former Yahoo! Executive and Hightail CEO Joins Ripple as COO

Op-ed - Former Yahoo! Executive and Hightail CEO Joins Ripple as COO

Brad Garlinghouse, the former CEO of Hightail and a long-time executive of Yahoo! has been appointed as Ripple’s first Chief Operating Officer, as the company passes the 100-employee mark.

“Brad’s experience will be invaluable as we advance our focus from building a strong pipeline to execution and exceptional growth,” said Ripple Labs CEO and co-founder Chris Larsen in a statement. “We share a vision for the future of finance and the creation of an Internet of Value in which value exchange is as fast, free, transparent and secure as information exchange is on the Internet today.”

Prior to Hightail (formerly known as YouSendIt), Garlinghouse worked for AOL Inc. as the former president of applications and commerce and for Yahoo! as an executive.

During his stay at Hightail in 2012, Garlinghouse focused the company on “file sharing and remote document access, placing it in competition with Dropbox Inc. and Box Inc.,” creating advertisements such “Your files should be neither Dropped nor Boxed.”

A year later, Garlinghouse rebranded YouSendIt to Hightail and stepped down from the position. By 2009, Hightail supported more than 8.5 million users, of which 100,000 were paying users.

Based on Garlinghouse’s success in his former tech companies, Ripple believes that the appointment of Garlinghouse will support the “incredible momentum for Ripple as a new infrastructure for global payments.”

Although Garlinghouse has a tremendous amount of experience in the technology industry, Garlinghouse admitted that the fintech space is relatively new to him.

“My honest answer is this is a new category for me — I haven’t worked in [the financial tech] space,” he said. “I think any time a leader is joining a new company, almost always the right strategy is to listen and learn, and for me the next 30 days for sure will be that, maybe even 60 days. These [are] people who are truly kind of geniuses in their field, ranging from cryptography to open source systems, and I’ve got a lot to learn.”

Photo via Yahoo / CC BY 2.0