The Key Players at Airtable - The $5 Billion Spreadsheet Company

Sarah HallamMeet the Team
Cropped Airtable

Two Airtable employees at the company's San Francisco headquarters. Courtesy of Airtable.

Airtable, the no-code-necessary cloud and database software startup, has more than doubled its valuation in the past six months alone. It’s now estimated to be worth $5.77 billion after two massive fundraising rounds. In September, the company raised $185 million in Series D funding and another $270 million just last week in a Series E round.

Airtable’s software works like Legos, allowing customers who know very little about coding to customize databases through building blocks to fit their own needs. A few years ago, going all-in on dynamic spreadsheets didn’t seem like a billion-dollar idea. The startup didn’t reach unicorn status until 2018. But in the past year, the company has grown its enterprise customers over 350% and boasts over 200,000 customers, ranging from big corporations like Netflix to nonprofits.

Publically, it’s a bit of a mystery what Airtable plans to do next with its new influx of cash. CEO and co-founder Howie Liu told Forbes that Airtable wasn’t seeking more funding, or even considering going public when Greenoaks investor Neil Mehta approached him.

“From the investor lens, the corporate growth signals there’s so much more room for us to grow,” Liu said in the interview. "Especially as we start aggressively investing into enterprise products, focus on enterprise needs, build out our sales and marketing engine."

Right before the Series E funding round, Liu also brought in a new C-suite executive team made of longstanding veterans of the tech industry. Take a look at the team members, both new and old, that are leading Airtable into its next billion-dollar chapter.

Airtable OC

Founded in 2012 by Howie Liu, Andrew Ofstad, and Emmett Nicholas, Airtable has grown slowly and steadily since its inception. The trio met as engineering students at Duke University but went down different paths in the tech industry before coming back together to work on Airtable. They spent three years working on the prototype for the company, obsessing over the ways to make spreadsheets more collaborative.

Steering the ship today is Liu, who previously worked as a product leader at Salesforce and got his start in tech after selling his CRM startup to his former employer shortly after graduation. Ofstad, who most recently worked as Airtable’s CPO until the new exec team was brought in, worked as a product manager for Android before leading the redesign of Google’s flagship Maps product. Nicholas currently oversees the tech and engineering team as CTO, but previously worked as a founding engineer at Stack Overflow, a community forum for programmers.

Airtable SF Seating Area

The seating area at Airtable's San Francisco office. Courtesy of Airtable.

In 2020, Airtable grew to 300 employees and hit refresh with a brand new C-suite of outside executives. The roster of new joiners includes CPO Peter Deng, who previously ran product teams at Facebook and Google and was Head of Rider at Uber. Leading the marketing team is Archana Agrawal, who brings seven years of experience working in marketing roles at the Australian software company Atlassian. Rounding out the new hires is Seth Shaw, who was brought on board to lead company sales as Chief Revenue Officer. His resume includes sales stints at Wrike, InVision, and LogMeIn.

One of the more interesting new hires is new CFO Ambereen Toubassy. She previously led the finance team at the ill-fated streaming app Quibi. Her background in finance is primarily in hedge funds, but she also worked as an advisor for Gwenyth Paltrow’s wellness company, goop. Her team includes even more tech veterans, like VP of Finance and Strategy Sid Agarwal, an Instacart alum, and Head of Finance Jennifer Kawahara, who came from the startup mix.com.

Airtable Screenshot

A screenshot of Airtable's page designer feature, which allows users to create digital designs without any code. Courtesy of Airtable.

Airtable’s codeless features wouldn’t be possible without the team of programmers under Nicholas doing the heavy lifting. Head of Core Product Engineering Jimmy Hills is responsible for the front-end design of the software and brings knowledge from his engineering roles at Twitch and Dropbox. Alexander Sorokin is coming up on seven years as the Lead Architect at the company and helps design the user-friendly coding apps that Airtable also offers to its customers. Montrey Whittaker juggles the IT team at Airtable but also works as the co-founder and president of the music site EARMILK on the side.

As to where the company is heading next? Head of Growth Darius Contractor is spearheading a search for software engineers and project managers to join the team to help further develop the product as a business application. With 76 positions listed on its careers page, Airtable doesn’t plan to stop growing anytime soon.

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