Lyft poaches ex-Tesla sales chief for COO job, Uber remains shook

Lyft has been going H.A.M. on the ride-hailing game, snagging hot talent from all over Silicon Valley and stacking bundles of VC cash -- but can it keep the momentum going?

Kyle Hyatt Former news and features editor
Kyle Hyatt (he/him/his) hails originally from the Pacific Northwest, but has long called Los Angeles home. He's had a lifelong obsession with cars and motorcycles (both old and new).
Kyle Hyatt
Aptiv Lyft CES Self-Driving Car

During Tesla's Q4 2017 earnings call yesterday, Elon Musk mentioned somewhat off-handedly that Tesla's longtime global head of sales and service, Jon McNeill, was no longer with the company though he made no mention of where McNeill went. It turns out; he went to Lyft , aka the marginally less-sketchy ride-hailing company, where he will serve as Chief Operating Officer.


Ex-Tesla global sales and service chief jumps ship and takes over the COO spot at Lyft.


The news was reported by Bloomberg reporter Eric Newcomer via Twitter. McNeill is a pretty big get for Lyft, which has been snagging talent from the likes of Uber and Google on the back of its recent round of funding by CapitalG. McNeill is filling a vacancy left by former Lyft COO Rex Tibbens. Tibbens hasn't landed anywhere since his departure from Lyft.

A big reason for Lyft's recent talent acquisition binge is that it managed to blow its own mind with how good a year it had in 2017. It was able to steal a good chunk of market share, and by good chunk we mean 50 percent (air horn) from its chief rival, Uber. Though to be fair, in the words of the great sage DJ Khaled, Uber played itself.

When it comes to self-driving technology, Lyft has been more or less asleep at the wheel, but thanks to its partnership with Aptiv and Waymo, it's catching up quickly. McNeill could also be a part of this move towards autonomy, but we'll have to wait and see.