LOS ANGELES, March 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Tinder, the world's most popular app for meeting new people, today announced a number of executive hires, as well as new responsibilities for certain existing leaders, to better position the company as it continues its rapid growth.
- Ferrell McDonald, former SVP/Head of Originals Marketing at Starz Entertainment, will join as Chief Marketing Officer.
- Maria Zhang, current VP of Engineering at Yahoo!, will join as VP of Engineering, leading all engineering efforts.
- Derek Callow, former Director & Global Head of Partner Marketing at YouTube, will join as VP of International, leading all international-focused initiatives.
- James Kim, former VP of Finance at TigerText, joins as VP of Finance.
Additionally, certain existing leaders are assuming new responsibilities:
- Ryan Ogle, Chief Technology Officer, will assume day-to-day responsibility for the product organization.
- Jonathan Badeen, SVP of Product, will assume the position of Chief Strategy Officer.
- Phil Schwarz, CMO, will take on a new role where he will continue to lead a range of marketing initiatives, including global brand and corporate partnerships.
"For a successful startup to become a successful business at scale, it's essential to add talented people with a broader set of experiences while retaining the talent that made the startup successful to begin with. Tinder's growth continues at a breakneck pace and I believe the moves we're announcing today really set us up to manage that growth effectively," said Sean Rad, Founder and CEO of Tinder. "Ferrell has a wealth of experience in non-traditional marketing endeavors. Maria brings experience with a variety of technology challenges at scale that we haven't previously had. Derek brings substantial international experience and will provide leadership for our international growth efforts to ensure Tinder continues to build on its global success. And James brings additional financial expertise that we now need given our substantial revenue growth rate. At the same time, nothing was more important than maintaining Ryan and Jonathan - two people who deserve much of the credit for Tinder's success - in key roles relating to product and growth, and I think Phil's new position working with Ferrell provides him more opportunity to build on the key partnerships and initiatives that have helped get us here. I could not be more excited about how these executive additions and changes set us up to continue the growth trajectory we're on and about the opportunities I see ahead of us as we continue to create this one-of-a-kind global business."
Ferrell McDonald is a senior strategic marketing executive with 20+ years of experience launching and building brands. Most recently as an independent marketing consultant, she partnered with NY and LA-based companies in the tech, real estate, toy and consumer electronics industries, and served as the interim SVP/Head of Marketing for Hudson Jeans. Prior to that, she was SVP of Marketing at Starz Entertainment where she oversaw the global marketing, branding and launch strategies for Starz original series and acquisitions. McDonald also spent many years at Nike as the Associate Director of Entertainment Marketing where she directed entertainment strategy and implementation of all relevant brand marketing initiatives, including global product releases, athlete launches and key sport marketing campaigns. McDonald holds an MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA as well as a BBA in Marketing from the University of Texas at Austin.
Maria Zhang is currently Vice President of Engineering at Yahoo!. Prior to her role at Yahoo!, Zhang founded Alike, a mobile local recommendation app which was acquired by Yahoo! in February 2013. Before starting Alike, Zhang was a Principal Software Development Manager at Microsoft, a Product Team Lead at Zillow.com, and a Senior Software Engineer at NetIQ Corp. She studied at Tsinghua University and Eastern Michigan University and holds a BA in Math\CS and MS in Computer Science. Zhang has filed 13 patents. She is the recipient of the 2015 Master Inventor Award at Yahoo! and the 2014 Apple Design Award.
Derek Callow has spent a decade in various global leadership roles with Google, based in Hong Kong, Singapore and California. Most recently, he was Director & Global Head of Partner Marketing for YouTube. Prior to that, he was Head of Marketing for Google across Southeast Asia. Before Google, he held various management and consulting roles at Accenture and Ogilvy & Mather. Callow holds an MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA and is an active angel investor and start-up advisor across Asia and the U.S.
James Kim was previously the VP of Finance at TigerText, the leading app for secure messaging of business information. Prior to TigerText, Kim served as the VP of Financial Planning and Analysis at the Rubicon Project, where he built and oversaw the FP&A team and was part of its successful IPO. Kim holds a B.A. in Economics from UCLA.
Launched in 2012, Tinder is the world's leading social app for meeting new people. With its global reach, people in all 196 countries around the world are swiping right to connect with others, making it a top 10 lifestyle app in more than 70 countries. In 2015, the company introduced Tinder Plus, giving users access to premium features, Rewind and Passport. Each day, 26 million matches are made on Tinder with more than 10 billion matches made to date.