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Navan bolsters leadership team with two appointments

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Travel management company Navan has announced the return of Rich Liu in the newly created role of CEO of Navan Travel as speculation continues about a potential IPO for the company.

Liu, who was previously the TMC’s chief revenue officer (CRO) between 2018 and 2021, rejoins Navan from litigation platform Everlaw to “oversee the broader travel business line to drive growth and execute against larger company initiatives”. He will report to Navan CEO Ariel Cohen.

In a statement, Navan emphasised that Liu had “helped drive five multi-billion-dollar unicorns across two IPOs, a successful acquisition and numerous funding rounds”, including at Navan itself, as well as Salesforce and Facebook.

“I’ve always had a deep, personal connection with Navan’s mission to make travel and expense easy,” said Liu. “As a growth leader, I know first-hand how integral travel is to driving growth for companies. I’m incredibly excited to be back to help ensure Navan customers stay a step ahead.”

In a separate move, Navan has appointed Amy Butte, who also has extensive experience of IPOs, to the company’s board of directors as audit committee chair.

“Butte brings a wealth of experience helping companies transition to their next stage of growth, having spearheaded two major financial services’ IPOs as CFO, including the transition of the New York Stock Exchange to a public company in 2006, as well as global travel supply distribution service Sabre Corporation,” said Navan in a statement.

Navan, which changed its name from TripActions in 2023, reportedly filed confidential paperwork for an IPO in the US in 2022. The Wall Street Journal has this week reported that Navan may seek an IPO “as early as 2025”.

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