Amid industry buzz of an impending initial public offering, Instacart has named Goldman Sachs veteran Nick Giovanni to succeed Sagar Sanghvi as chief financial officer.
Plans call for Giovanni to take the CFO reins on Jan. 27, San Francisco-based Instacart said yesterday. Sanghvi, a former associate at investment bank KKR & Co., has served as Instacart’s CFO since August 2019 and, after a transition period, is reportedly leaving the company to return to investing.
Giovanni (left) will oversee finance, accounting and corporate development at Instacart and report directly to founder and CEO Apoorva Mehta. The company emphasized his deal-making experience in over 20 years at investment bank Goldman Sachs, where he advised clients on hundreds of financing, strategic and investing transactions. Those included some of the largest financial transactions and public offerings of the last two decades, for companies such as Airbnb, DoorDash, Square, Twitter, Snap, Dropbox, Yelp, Zynga, eBay, Meituan and Baidu, as well as direct listings for Spotify and Slack, Instacart said.
In addition, Giovanni worked on high-profile merger-and-acquisition deals at Goldman Sachs that “helped reshape industries,” including Slack’s sale to Salesforce, Credit Karma’s sale to Intuit, Spotify’s acquisition of podcast properties, Skype’s sale to Microsoft and Zillow’s purchase of Trulia, Instacart noted.
“As we look ahead, Nick’s finance experience, operational discipline and deep understanding of complex marketplaces like ours will be instrumental to Instacart. He’s regarded as one of the most respected and accomplished technology and internet investment bankers, and he’s played a pivotal role advising some of the world’s most prolific companies, founders and management teams as they’ve scaled from being private companies to global leaders,” Mehta said in a statement.
“For years, Nick has served as a trusted adviser to Instacart, supporting our business as we’ve grown to become the North American leader in online grocery,” he added. “We’re excited to now welcome him as our new CFO, where he’ll help steer Instacart’s next chapter of growth and strengthen our position as an essential service for consumers, shoppers and partners.”
News surfaced in November that Instacart was gearing up for an IPO and enlisted Goldman Sachs to lead the offering, with a potential launch in early 2021. Reports said the IPO was being accelerated after California voters approved Proposition 22. The ballot measure, supported by companies such as Uber, Lyft and DoorDash, reaffirmed the independent contractor status of app-based “gig economy” workers such as drivers and delivery personnel, which were slated to be classified as employees — receiving full benefits and labor protections — under California Assembly Bill 5.
Also in November, last-mile food delivery provider DoorDash filed for an IPO. San Francisco-based DoorDash specializes in restaurant delivery but recently made a bigger foray into on-demand grocery delivery.
Giovanni joined Goldman Sachs in 1998 and most recently served as head of the Global Technology, Media and Telecom Group. He was also a member of Goldman Sachs’ Investment Banking Division Executive Committee and its Investment Banking Division Growth Investing Committee. During his tenure at the investment bank, Giovanni held roles across offices in New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong and San Francisco.
“Our family has relied on Instacart for years, and I’m thrilled to join the team during such a unique time for the company. Instacart is helping to bring the grocery industry online for consumers, retailers, advertisers and shoppers,” Giovanni commented. “It’s been particularly impressive to watch Instacart successfully scale its operations and technology over the last year during a period of unprecedented growth. Apoorva and the talented management team have built a lasting business in a massive market that’s poised for continued online growth. I look forward to partnering with them as we focus on delivering long-term value for our customers, shoppers and partners.”
Sanghvi (left) has spent more than five years at Instacart, coming the company from KKR in September 2015 as vice president of finance and strategy. He was promoted to CFO nearly four years later. Before a two-year stint as an associate at KKR, Sanghvi spent two years at Goldman Sachs as an analyst.
“We want to thank Sagar for all of his contributions to Instacart over the last five years. During his time at the company, Sagar helped us navigate some of our biggest business milestones while significantly strengthening our financial profile,” Mehta noted. “From building up our financial rigor to helping us successfully scale our business during a year of unprecedented growth, I’m proud of how Sagar and our talented teams effectively managed triple-digit surges in customer order volume, doubled the size of our shopper community and expanded our marketplace to welcome hundreds of new retailers.”
North America’s largest third-party provider of online grocery services, Instacart partners with more than 500 national, regional and local retailers, offering delivery and pickup from nearly 40,000 stores across more than 5,500 cities. Its services — also including delivery in retail sectors such as home goods, beauty care, convenience, off-price/closeout, office supplies, vitamins and supplements, pharmacy and consumer electronics — are available to 85% of U.S. households and 70% of Canadian households.