Outdoorsy CTO Han Yuan [Credit: Outdoorsy]

Outdoorsy names Yuan as new CTO

US: Outdoor travel marketplace Outdoorsy Holdings has announced that Han Yuan has joined the company as chief technology officer [CTO].

The move comes hot on the heels of what was described as a “record” year for Outdoorsy.

Having experienced “skyrocketing” growth from its proprietary insurtech, Roamly, the firm went on to launch Outdoorsy Stays in California, Texas and Colorado. It also launched campground properties in California and Colorado, and a glamping retreat in the Texas Hill Country.

With experience in leading engineering and product teams across marketplaces, e-commerce, SaaS [software-as-a-service], and consumer internet, Yuan has guided high-profile tech companies into periods of rapid development and growth, including UpWork’s successful initial public offering [IPO] in 2018.

In 2024, Yuan will lead the company’s ambitious vision to elevate the Outdoorsy platform to new heights as it works to further open up access to unique outdoor experiences. The new CTO will also lead technology innovation for Outdoorsy’s proprietary insurtech Roamly as it continues its rapid growth and expands into new markets, adding services and technologies to support the company’s multi-faceted ecosystem.

Outdoorsy, which achieved profitability in 2023, is currently pacing at a 175 per cent multi-year growth rate and is on pace to exceed $3 billion in transactions in 2024. The marketplace recently celebrated one million booked trips – over seven million booked travel days –  in June.

Roamly has also unveiled Roamly RAC, its open API platform to power marketplaces, enterprises, RV and boat dealerships and insurance carriers who are seeking a fully digital insurance product suite to bring to their consumer markets.

Outdoorsy CEO Jeff Cavins said: “Han is a seasoned consumer tech executive who will add to the advancement of our developing ecosystem as we lead into market expansion and the upward trajectory of the open platform we’ve brought to market with Roamly.

“Under Han’s leadership, we will invest in accelerating our innovation through cross-platform applications and services and mobile product development. I am confident that Han’s vision and experience will bring out the best work in our team and deliver exceptional experiences to our guests and partners,” he added.

Prior to joining Outdoorsy, Yuan served as the chief product and technology officer at Recharge, a subscription commerce engine for the Shopify platform. He previously led engineering at Upwork, where he managed an engineering team through the firm’s IPO in 2018, and held roles at companies such as Netflix and eBay.

Yuan said: “It’s an exciting moment in time to join Outdoorsy and I’m looking forward to building solutions that bridge the gap between its digital and physical domains. As a leader in tech, it’s critical to believe in the unlocked and unseen potential of the product you’re building.

“It’s equally as important to have a strong support system, as I do from the Outdoorsy engineering team, to test, fail, learn, and thrive in our pursuit to bring ambitious projects to life,” added Yuan.

Speaking later to STRz, Cavins said that Outdoorsy was “actively engaged in working with our bankers” to pursue an IPO in the future and that the company was exploring more opportunities for mergers and acquisitions [M&A] in the near future, having quietly totalled $35 million in M&A activity to date.

Founded in 2015, Outdoorsy Holdings has evolved from a peer-to-peer RV rental marketplace into an ecosystem designed to transform how a traveller accesses – and enjoys – the outdoors. In August last year, the company launched its Oasis Fund – a $30 million initiative dedicated exclusively to providing funding for the purchase of safari glamping tents for eligible entrepreneurs.

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