Back to All Episodes

About this episode

Servaes Tholen (Grove, Thumbtack, UpWork, eBay) is a financial operator with a wealth of experience leading cross-functional teams. After holding various financial positions at eBay, including CFO of the North America business unit, Servaes moved on to work with smaller, dual-purpose startups with social missions. In today’s episode, Servaes joins Catherine Jhung to discuss his transition from eBay to the startup world, his untraditional route from applied physics to finance, how companies like Grove and UpWork are making a difference in the world, and much more.


Topics include:

  • Growing up in the Netherlands.
  • How living abroad before moving to the US influenced Servaes and the work he does today.
  • Working as the VP and CFO for eBay’s North America business unit.
  • Key takeaways from his time as a consultant for McKinsey.
  • The marketplace demand for companies with social purposes.
  • The immediacy of climate change, and our social responsibility to respond.
  • Long-term career aspirations.
  • And other topics…


Servaes Tholen is the CFO of Grove Collaborative where he oversees Accounting, FP&A, Corporate Finance and Business Operations. Prior to Grove, Servaes worked at Thumbtack where he served as CFO and COO for over four years. Prior to Thumbtack, Servaes was CFO of Elance and Upwork where he was primarily responsible for Finance, Human Resources, Analytics, and Data Science, before, during, and after the merger between Elance and oDesk that created Upwork. He holds an MSc in Applied Physics from Delft University of Technology, as well as an MBA from INSEAD with a focus on finance.