Grab names first chief technology officer for transport
Ride-hailing service Grab has appointed Mark Porter as chief technology officer for transport, overseeing the company’s technology infrastructure and teams dedicated to its private car hires, taxi-hailing, motorbike taxis, carpooling and multimodal services.
Grab has carried 2.5 billion customers in Southeast Asia since its launch in 2012. As Grab continues to scale up to be the region’s largest ride-hailing platform, Porter will ensure its technology infrastructure is robust enough to deliver high standards of reliability and stability and at the same time agile enough to support constant product innovation.
“More than one in six Southeast Asians ride with us and millions earn income with us as driver partners,” said Theo Vassilakis, group chief technology officer. “Beyond delivering safe, affordable and convenient ways to travel, we have a big responsibility to ensure that our systems remain stable and reliable even as we continue to grow. We know that, when things don’t work, it’s more than the inability to get a ride – it impacts on people’s livelihoods.
“At the same time, the pace of innovation at Grab means that we need to design, build and ship features in as short a time as a week. This is critical to ensure we can keep pace with how our customer needs and the market landscape evolve. With his deep systems expertise, there is no one more capable or experienced than Mark to ensure Grab’s technology infrastructure is safe, robust and fit for purpose.”
Porter will also oversee the development of agile platforms and machine learning, AI, and data-science capabilities to deliver a safer, more seamless and personalised transport experience.
Based in Seattle, he will lead and work with engineering teams across Grab’s global network of six R&D centres in Singapore, Seattle, Beijing, Bangalore, Ho Chi Minh City and Jakarta.