Hilary McQuaide | Influence 100

Hilary McQuaide 

Head of Communications 



Investor relations and communications specialist Hilary McQuaide has a track record of spotting future technology giants ripe for acquisition and getting into their comms teams early to shape their approach. She has been head of social media and entertainment platform-of-the-moment TikTok since 2017, way before its surge in popularity, especially with Gen Z. There has been a spike in users since lockdown –  the platform now has more than 1 billion users worldwide and revenue surged 111% in 2020 and most consumer brands now consider the short-form video platform as a comms channel.

McQuaide also handled the ping-pong around TikTok’s ByteDance ownership under the Trump administration. Talks of a deal, however, were shelved once the former president left office. Even so, there’s still ongoing concerns over data and privacy, and regulation. 

She was previously the first comms hire and member of the executive team at Yik Yak, responsible for public relations, company positioning, internal communications and university relations. From 2012 to joining Yik Yak in 2015 she was the first communications employee at Dropbox, overseeing its international expansion and looking after crisis comms, product comms, and analyst relations.

After starting her career as an analyst at Sequoia Capital, McQuaide moved to the comms function of one of the companies it backed, Clearwell Systems, continuing after it was bought by Semantic in 2011.