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Christopher Dean

Urban Airship, a Portland upstart that provides behind-the-scenes services like push notifications and in-app purchasing for mobile apps, has named former Skype Chief Strategy Officer Christopher Dean to the position of chief revenue officer.

It’s a big pick-up for the fast-growing startup. And it comes just two months after the company landed a $15.1 million venture capital investment and gobbled up SimpleGeo.

Backers of Urban Airship include Verizon,, Founder’s Co-op, True Ventures, Foundry Group and others.

Dean is expected to work out of the company’s San Francisco operations, noting in a press release that Urban Airship “has the opportunity to take the leadership position in a new and important category of products critical to companies that are now interacting with customers on mobile devices.”

Added CEO Scot Kveton in a statement:

“To be a truly great startup there has to be a combination of first-timers hell bent on changing the world, and been-there-done-that execs who know how to focus teams and leverage the best opportunities. We get a little bit of both with Chris, and he will be a phenomenal addition to the leadership team.”

Dean worked at Skype from 2008 until June of last year, and was part of a larger executive purge following Microsoft’s $8.5 billion purchase. Dean told All Things D, which first reported the news, that Microsoft paid full price for Skype and noted that it “is a very strong and good one” for Microsoft


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