Microsoft Execs Fill Outreach’s Expanding Leadership Team

It’s sunshine and rainbows for Seattle-based startup Outreach and they are celebrating their new tech-unicorn status by adding to their leadership team. As one of the fastest growing companies in the Emerald City, Outreach offers their customers a way to streamline the process of selling with their sales engagement software. To help them get it all done, they will be onboarding Microsoft veterans Margaret Arakawa, Amritansh Raghav and Abhi Abhishek.

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“Outreach has already experienced incredible growth, but we’ve been looking to add leaders who will help get us to that next phase,” said Manny Medina, chief executive officer of Outreach. “Finding leaders who are the right fit for our culture and have the right experience is key. Margaret, Amritansh, and Abhi are already proven leaders in their respective fields and their experience will be instrumental in shaping the growth of the platform. Under their leadership, we are continuing to scale our marketing efforts and further our technological capabilities in artificial intelligence as we deliver a complete system of action through a single pane of glass for all customer-facing teams.”

Arakawa will be assuming the role of chief marketing officer for Outreach. As the CMO, she will work closely with company leaders to drive strategy and business execution while leading marketing efforts across all company channels. She comes to the startup with almost two decades of experience with ol’ softy, most recently leading the US Windows and Surface business units. Arakawa received an MBA from Northwestern University and a bachelor of science in applied economics from the Wharton School of Business.

Raghav will serve as Outreach’s new executive vice president of product and engineering. He is an experienced tech leader who has been solving business problems with innovative technologies over the last twenty years – most of those in positions of increasing responsibility with Microsoft. He attended the State University of New York and completed his MS in mechanical engineering in 1995.

Abhishek will be heading up the voice engineering platform team as vice president with Outreach. He has worked his way up through the ranks at Microsoft and has a strong background in software development and experience with a wide range of MS products – including their Windows, Office, Bing, Skype and most recently the AI & Research division.

Outreach currently employs 350 people and aims to up that to 450 by the end of 2019. The company raised $239 in series E funding in April which pushed their valuation over the $1 billion mark. It was different story in the beginning, however. It all started in 2014 when Manny Medina and his co-founders were struggling to keep their HR recruiting software company afloat. With their fledgling firm facing imminent fiscal doom, the founders built sales automation software that was born out of a need to get 3 broke sales guys to hustle like 20.

“It was myself and two salespeople and we needed to execute like a team of 20 to get our sales out of the hole,” he told Business Insider in a 2017 interview. Between Medina and co-founders Gordon Hempton, Wes Hather, and Andrew Kinzer, they designed a work-flow app that automated cold-calling which allowed them to generate more leads and schedule more meetings. As it turns out, the emails worked – too well. The personalized touches made a difference and it attracted attention.

“People were like, I don’t want to buy your recruiting product. I want to buy your sales tool. And that was the birth of Outreach,” Medina said.