Matt Wilson, a permanent member of GC Powerlist UK, is leaving his position as Associate General Counsel (GC) for EMEA at Uber to take on the GC role at UK multinational television production company Fremantle.
Wilson, who will join his new employers in August, has time to spend a frenzied six-year stint with fast-growing Uber, who has faced delicate legal and regulatory issues during his tenure.
One of the key challenges Wilson faced was the launch of UberPool. Obtaining regulatory changes in countries across EMEA; Start Uber Eats; and working to secure the renewal of Uber’s private rental license in London after TfL initially refused to renew it in September 2017.
The toughest legal issue, perhaps, last spared Wilson when the UK Supreme Court ruled in February that Uber drivers are full-time workers under the Employment Rights Act of 1996 and therefore receive the national minimum wage, annual vacation entitlement and other legal protection for employees. Commentators have highlighted the “huge impact” of the decision, the implications of which will certainly pose a serious challenge to Wilson’s successor.
Summing up his time at Uber, Wilson said, “I am very grateful to everyone at Uber for six amazing years. It has been a real privilege to build and lead our legal teams in EMEA and APAC and to work with everyone across the company to grow Uber from a startup to the publicly traded organization it is today. After living in Amsterdam for the past four years, the time is right for our family to return to the UK and I can’t wait to start a new adventure in Fremantle. ‘
A widely recognized in-house employee, a Wilson technology colleague said of Wilson on the 2018 GC Powerlist: “Uber’s Matt Wilson is someone who has very delicate and ongoing legal issues to deal with. You would go a long way to find someone with a more difficult job. ‘He is widely credited with successfully managing the rapid growth of Uber’s internal team, which grew from zero to 75 employees in just five years between 2015 and 2020.
Commenting on his upcoming role, Wilson said: ‘This is a fascinating development phase for the industry and a really exciting time to join a company I have long admired. Fremantle is at the heart of popular culture around the world and continues to lead innovation in the entertainment industry. I look forward to joining the team and having the opportunity to help Fremantle grow. ‘
Fremantle’s best-known productions include the various global iterations of the Idols, Got Talent and The X Factor talent competitions.
A detailed overview of Wilson’s previous internal career can be found in his profile for 2018