December 08, 2011 09:07 ET

oDesk Names Thomas Layton Executive Chairman

Former CEO of OpenTable and Metaweb Assumes Active Leadership Role as Company Expands Aggressively

REDWOOD CITY, CA--(Marketwire - Dec 8, 2011) - oDesk Corporation, the world's largest and fastest-growing online workplace, today announced that Thomas Layton has been appointed as the company's new Executive Chairman. In this position, Layton will work closely alongside CEO Gary Swart in an active operating role leading the oDesk® online workplace.

"We are extraordinarily fortunate to welcome Thomas to our leadership team," said Swart. "He is a three-time winner, having led a series of successful Internet companies: CitySearch, OpenTable and Metaweb. oDesk has doubled in size each year for the past four years. We're pleased to go into 2012 with a strengthened team and Thomas' deep and relevant expertise in disruptive, high-growth businesses like ours."

"I had no plans to take another operating role, but oDesk pulled me in like a magnet," said Layton. "oDesk's vision for the future of work, combined with its explosive growth and exceptional management team lay the foundation for a company that will truly change the world. I'm excited to work with Gary and his team to delight customers on the world's most thriving online workplace."

Last month, contractors earned a record $23.5 million through oDesk, while businesses posted more than 100,000 jobs to the service.

"oDesk is one of the most exciting companies in the entire Benchmark portfolio," said Kevin Harvey a Benchmark partner and oDesk board member. "The combination of Gary, Thomas and the rest of the oDesk team makes this business unstoppable."

Most recently, Layton served as CEO of Metaweb Technologies until its acquisition by Google in 2010. He previously spent more than six years as the CEO of OpenTable, where he expanded the service's restaurant partners from 500 to more than 7,000 and grew online reservations to more than two million per month. Previously, Layton was a co-founder of CitySearch, Inc. which later merged with Ticketmaster and is now a subsidiary of USA Networks. Layton remains on the board of directors of OpenTable, and three other companies. He holds an MBA from the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University and a BS from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

About oDesk
oDesk ( is the world's largest and most thriving online workplace, enabling businesses to hire, manage and pay a flexible online workforce.

With more than 100,000 new job opportunities each month and more than $200 million earned by contractors so far this year, oDesk has doubled in size since 2007.

In 2011, oDesk was named the seventh fastest-growing company in Silicon Valley by the Silicon Valley Business Journal, the 114th fastest-growing company in North America by Deloitte, and was ranked on the Inc. 500 for the third year in a row.

oDesk is a registered trademark of oDesk Corporation. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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