Ride-hailing firm Ola has announced that Sir Mike Rake has joined the Ola UK Board as non-executive Chairman, while ex-Transport for London Director, Leon Daniels, has become an independent non-executive director.
Ola says Leon and Sir Mike will draw on "deep experience across the private and public sectors to provide the strongest possible oversight, corporate governance, and strategic counsel" to them as it continues to grow and scale, reflecting Ola’s long-term commitment and ambition for the UK market.
Ola launched in the UK in 2018 and has expanded rapidly since, launching in London in February 2020. Today Ola operates across 27 local authorities, including Birmingham, Liverpool and Bristol.
Since launching in the UK Ola has further expanded its offering for UK riders, including launching Ola Corporate, a partnership with Gett.
Sir Mike is said to be one of the UK’s leading business figures with decades of leadership experience at the most senior level. He joins Ola having previously served in a range of senior boardroom roles including as Chairman of Worldpay Group plc (2015-2018), BT Group plc (2007-2017), EasyJet plc (2010-2013) and International Chairman of KPMG (2002-2007), along with serving as President of the Confederation of British Industry (2013-2015).
He is joined by Leon Daniels, who will bring his years of policy and regulatory experience in the global mobility industry to assist Ola with its growth in the capital and across the UK.
Leon served as Managing Director, Surface Transport at Transport for London until 2017, and previously held the position of Commercial Director at UK Bus, overseeing new ventures in UK and international transport. In 2019, he was awarded an OBE for Services to Transport in recognition of his expertise and experience across the UK, Europe, and Asia.
Sir Mike and Leon will join Balasubrahmanyam Vijay Juturi, alongside Marc Rozendal (Managing Director, Ola UK) and Karl Lutzow (Operations Director, Ola UK) on the board of Ola UK.
Bhavish Aggarwal, Chairman and Group CEO, Ola, said: “We are delighted to welcome Sir Mike and Leon to the Ola UK Board. As a scaled, global business with a major presence in the UK, the appointment of such high-quality independent board members underlines our commitment to the UK and the scale of our ambition in this dynamic market.”
Sir Mike Rake, Chairman of the Ola UK Board, said: “Ola is one of the most ambitious and innovative global technology companies and I am very pleased to be joining at this stage of its journey. The application of technology to mobility holds out an exciting future of cleaner, safer and more efficient transportation for millions of UK passengers, and I look forward to helping Ola continue to do what they do best – innovate for the benefit of society.”