Polarsteps, the leading travel app for planning, tracking, and reliving trips, is embarking on a thrilling journey of its own today, after proudly announcing Clare Jones as its new CEO. This leadership transition comes at an exciting time for the Amsterdam-based scale-up, which is gearing up for a new and accelerated chapter of growth after reaching the milestone of a global community of 10 million travelers.

Clare has spent the past eight years at what3words, where she was instrumental in scaling the company in her role as Chief Commercial Officer. Now stepping into a new role as CEO at Polarsteps, she will lead the company’s transformation from a standout Dutch scale-up — already celebrated as the most downloaded travel app in the Netherlands post-pandemic — to a major force on the global travel tech stage.

“With so much organic growth to date, I’m excited to see what will happen as we scale our growth and marketing functions to help more people learn about (and fall in love with!) Polarsteps,” says Clare Jones. “Telling people I’m moving to join Polarsteps and seeing some of them whip out their phones and show me their beautiful adventures has been a really special experience over the last few weeks. Now that our community has grown to 10 million registered travelers, I’m excited to see us reach 20 million, then 50 million more!”

Co-founder Maximiliano Neustadt, who is returning to his previous role as Chief Technology Offer after his interim stint as CEO, says: “We’d set an incredibly high bar for our next CEO, so high that it took us a long time to find the perfect candidate. But to now be welcoming someone as talented as Clare proves that the wait was worth it. Her wealth of experience and track record in scaling a business is just what is needed to lead Polarsteps to new heights.”

This strengthening of the leadership team is poised to not only complement the skillset among the current team, but will also help to rapidly advance and broaden the company's plans.

“We have huge ambitions for the future,” says Maximiliano. “And bringing Clare aboard will not only be instrumental in pursuing these, but will also allow me and my fellow founders to focus on building our product, which is where we can add the most value. To us, it’s the best way forward to turn Polarsteps into a category-defining travel platform worldwide.”

Leadership skills and commercial and operations expertise weren’t the only qualities the company was looking for. Maximiliano: “It was important to us that the person stepping into this role had a true appreciation of the remarkable culture we’ve created within our company and team, and a wish to cultivate and preserve this. This was clear with Clare from the start.”

“There’s something incredibly unique about the team at Polarsteps,” agrees Clare. “It’s a company where culture matters hugely. I love that I’ll get to be part of a business that cares so much about its people and about building a company that’s positive for the team and for the world. 

“I’ve experienced firsthand how travel can be transformative personally, helping us build understanding across cultures and see how much connects — rather than separates — us. So I feel excited to join a team that’s helping people explore and discover the world beautifully and responsibly.”

“I also love the scale of the mission here; there is no end-to-end travel app right now for planning, tracking, and reliving our adventures. I want to be part of making that happen.”

For more information or to request an interview with Clare Jones, Maximiliano Neustadt, or other members of Polarsteps’ founding team, please reach out to:

Clare Jones Biography

Clare Jones has spent the past 8.5 years at what3words, joining in its very early days as a startup. In her role as CCO, she helped scale the company to post-Series C stage, fundraised, and led partnerships for what3words around the world. Prior to what3words, her background was in the development and growth of social enterprises and in impact investment. Clare is British, was featured in the 2019 Forbes 30 under 30 list for technology and is an angel investor of companies with positive social and environmental missions, such as slow-travel company Byway. Clare also volunteers with NGOs working with vulnerable women and refugees in London.

About Polarsteps

Polarsteps, the Amsterdam-based scale-up founded in 2015, has become an essential trip companion for over 10 million explorers worldwide. As an end-to-end app, it empowers travelers to plan, track, and relive their journeys in a uniquely smart and visually beautiful way. With a dedicated team of more than 50 international talents, the company has bold ambitions to ignite the spirit of adventure in modern explorers, at every step of the journey. The big mission? To lead a global shift towards more authentic, meaningful, and responsible travel.

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© 2024 Polarsteps

© 2024 Polarsteps

© 2024 Polarsteps