Some big news today that I’m excited to share. This morning we’ve announced to the market (via this release) that after 11+ massive years of being CEO I’m passing the baton to Steve Vamos who has been appointed by the Board as CEO of Xero from 1 April.
As we enter the next chapter of growth all over the world and drive towards $1B of revenue, the Board and I realized Xero needs world class multinational tech company skills and execution experience to help us meet those targets.
Over the last 18 months we’ve worked with Steve on strategic projects and it became clear he has the people leadership, coaching and global tech experience to lead our amazing leadership team. I’m super excited to work closely with Steve and the team and focus on innovation and strategy as a Non Executive Director on the Board, which is the area I’m most passionate about.
Looking back I’m really proud of what we’ve achieved since we started the business with a handful of people in a small apartment. Just in the last year we’ve passed the 1 million subscriber milestone, hit EBITDA positive, and consolidated our listing on the ASX. We’ve established ourselves as the leading small business platform and community. For our next chapter the key skills required by the leadership team are scaling a global technology business. Steve is an expert at this and has the people leadership and operational discipline we need for this next phase.
I’ve known Steve personally for over 10 years and of him for over 20 years when I first met him in Wellington. Steve understands our business and has helped build our global leadership team he has strong relationships with each of them.
With over 30+ years leading large scale tech companies including Apple Computer Asia Pacific, ninemsn and Microsoft Australia, Steve understands the dynamics of how the biggest multinational technology companies operate. He’s also successfully worked in tech start-ups and smaller online businesses so understands what is important to focus on as businesses scale. An experienced leader, he knows how to build teams, create a business culture that supports growth and high performance, and deliver operational excellence globally.
I’m excited to continue to work on how Machine Learning will transform accounting and see the new initiatives we dreamed up – like the Xero Life Long Learning Platform – deliver their full potential. I’ve been super lucky to be able to focus on product for the last 11 years at Xero, while our leadership team has been operating the business. We have a clear innovation roadmap and Steve is ready is execute on the vision we’ve spent the last 18 months building.
Xero is only just at the beginning with so much more to be achieved. We’ve done much of the hard work. We have a clear strategy, a strong leadership team and the business is performing strongly. So it’s the ideal time for me to hand things over.
Please join me in welcoming Steve officially to the team.