Uber has hired its first marketing chief. The brand announced today that Rebecca Messina will start in early October.
“I’m thrilled to welcome Rebecca to Uber,” Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber CEO, said in a statement. “She’s exactly the right leader to build our marketing efforts globally and to showcase the ways Uber is igniting opportunities for our customers around the world.”
Messina said her first task will be to bring the global marketing teams together so the brand can start telling its story to consumers, drivers and employees around the world.
“Uber hasn’t had a global marketing leader, so I think that job No. 1 is really to galvanize the internal team, put my arms around the 700 marketers around the world and really make them feel like they are part of something bigger, have a leader,” Messina said.
While Uber has not had a chief marketing officer to date, the brand did hire Bozoma Saint John as its chief brand officer over a year ago. She left the position for Endeavor in June, after just one year in the role.
Messina noted that her second goal as Uber’s marketing chief will be to “get very clear on what the brand stands for and what it needs to stand for and what that brand vision is so we can ensure that everything we do and everywhere we do it we have the same voice.”
Uber has been no stranger to major controversy in the past few years, from allegations of workplace harassment and a subsequent investigation into the company’s work culture to racial discrimination allegations. In May, the brand put out a major marketing campaign, using Khosrowshahi to tell people the brand was trying to be better for users, drivers and employees. Messina hopes to keep pushing that message of changing for the better.
“There’s a lot of culture change that I am looking to drive and culture doesn’t change quickly,” she said. “Part of that is going to coincide with the work that we are going to do on the brand. As you evolve the brand, the culture will evolve with it.”
Messina most recently spent two and a half years as svp and global CMO at Beam Suntory. Prior to that, she spent nearly 22 years at the Coca-Cola Company in numerous roles including vp, global marketing capability, integration and svp, marketing and innovation, ventures and emerging brands.