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Leadership

OpenTable names new CEO

Debby Soo, of sibling brand Kayak, replaces Steve Hafner in the role.
Open Table CEO
Photo courtesy of OpenTable

Online reservation company OpenTable has named Debby Soo, an executive from sibling brand Kayak, as its new CEO.

She replaces Steve Hafner, the CEO of Kayak who has also overseen OpenTable since 2019.

Soo had been with Kayak, an online travel agency, for 10 years, rising from intern to chief commercial officer in 2017.  During her time there, she worked on product, marketing, sales and business development, she wrote in a blog post Wednesday.

Of her plans for OpenTable, Soo wrote: “Like any business, we can be even better with tighter alignment across product, sales, and marketing, faster go-to-market strategies and product roll-outs, and more strategic deployment of our resources to protect our share in the U.S. and grow internationally.”

“I am so excited to help lead OpenTable through this unprecedented moment, to use and apply all the learnings I’ve collected to date, and to continue to learn and refine my craft, as well as get to know, on a much deeper level, our people, our restaurants, and our diners.”

Soo also emphasized OpenTable’s plans to help restaurants through the pandemic with a special pricing program called Open Door along with other support initiatives. 

“We want to make it clear that we’ve got their backs at a time when it’s harder than ever to be in an already extremely challenging business,” she wrote.

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