Rod Drury is the CEO and co-founder of Xero and serves on its Board of Directors. As the visionary behind Xero he has been acknowledged by his international peers through many technology and business awards, including 2013 EY New Zealand Entrepreneur of the Year, NZ Herald Business Leader of the Year in 2012, member of the NZ Hi-Tech Hall of Fame, NZ Hi-Tech Entrepreneur of the Year in 2006 and 2007, World Class New Zealander for ICT in 2008, and Honorary Fellow of the Institute of IT Professionals NZ. Before starting Xero, Rod was involved in a number of successful startups including Context Connect, Glazier Systems and Aftermail.
Anna joined Xero in February 2016 as Managing Director for New Zealand, bringing a deep experience of online, financial services and operations. She has a strong passion for driving the success of New Zealanders and their businesses through technology. Formerly General Manager Internet Banking at ASB, Anna's leadership saw the launch of many digital world firsts across the Bank, including Virtual Branch, Facebook Payments and LikeLoan, along with awards recognising world class digital experiences. Her tenure at ASB also included leadership roles across Marketing, Innovation & Design, BankDirect, Contact Centre and Audit, and she was recognised globally as a Judge for the EFMA Innovation Awards over consecutive years. Most recently Anna was General Manager Digital First at Spark. She is a Capacity Partner with the Springboard Trust and is also an alumni from the Global Women 'Breakthrough Leaders' program.
Gary Turner is co-founder and managing director at Xero UK and is responsible for Xero's business interests across Europe, Middle East & Africa. Xero is the multi award winning global leader in online accounting software with more than 1 million paying subscribers around the world.
Under Gary's leadership Xero UK has scaled from a three person startup in 2009 with annual revenues of £50,000 to reported revenues of £26m in early 2017.
A native of Glasgow, Scotland, Gary previously held executive positions at Microsoft, Systems Union and Pegasus Software. He's an engaging speaker, writer and thought-leader on start-ups, digital transformation, and leadership inside hyper-growth organisations. Gary has also served as a mentor to early stage Fintech startups at Techstars London.
Emma is founder of small business network Enterprise Nation, the UK's most active small business community. Helping thousands of people start and grow their own successful business, it offers a voice to government for members too. Emma has written a number of best-selling business books, including Spare Room Start-Up, Working 5 to 9, Go Global and the StartUp Kit. Emma was awarded an MBE for services to enterprise in 2012.
He is the founder and CEO of Leberecht & Partners, a consulting firm that helps leaders and organisations with their vision, story, and transformation. Tim is the author of the international bestseller, The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself published by HarperCollins in 2015. He is also the founder of The Business Romantic Society, a global collective of strategists, advertisers, curators, artists, developers, designers, researchers, and data scientists with the shared mission to bring beauty and enchantment to business.
Professor Richard Susskind OBE is an author, speaker, and independent advisor to major professional firms and to national governments. His main area of expertise is the future of professional service and, in particular, the way in which the IT and the internet are changing the work of lawyers. He has worked on legal technology for over 30 years. He lectures internationally, has written many books, and advised on numerous government inquiries.
Rachael Powell is the Chief People Officer and is responsible for Xero’s People Experience function globally. She has previously held positions in talent management, strategy, business development and marketing across online and technology businesses. Passionate about nurturing talent, Rachael believes in strength-based leadership and positive engagement programs to effectively mobilise the business strategy and support sustainable growth.
Matthew Syed is married and a father to two young children (Evie and Teddy), and a trustee of Greenhouse Sports, a charity that empowers young people from disadvantaged communities through sport. He is a columnist for The Times, the author of two acclaimed books on the science of high performance – Bounce and Black Box Thinking – and a former international table tennis champion.
Matthew challenges organisations to avoid institutionalism and open themselves up to change. Feedback should be shared with everybody. Just as the entire aviation industry learns from each aircraft’s black box after an incident, failure should become an opportunity to adapt and grow.
Niall was appointed Global Head of Corporate and Institutional Digital in July 2016. Previous to this role he was Head of Markets, EMEA from June 2014 till July 2016. He joined HSBC as Global Head of Credit Trading in 2010 from Markit Group, a global financial information services company where he was Global Co-Head of Equities, Indices, Commodities, Risk Management and Economics since 2007. Niall has extensive experience within the financial markets industry. He worked at ABN AMRO for 7 years as Global Head of Traded Markets where he was responsible for the bank’s Trading, Sales, and Research businesses in Fixed Income, Equities and Foreign Exchange. Niall previously worked at Merrill Lynch, SG Warburg and IBJ International.
Niall is part of the Frictionless finance panel discussion at 2:15 PM on Day 1
Laura believes that amazing things happen when you align different types of people to a common purpose. She wants to live in a world where people feel confident to be themselves, and is passionate about creating cultures and teams that enable that to happen.
With over 15 years’ experience in leadership and technology, Laura leads a large innovative team of product managers and engineers who are dedicated to building beautiful cloud accounting software used by over a million small businesses all over the world.
When she’s not leading teams at Xero, you may find Laura speaking or volunteering at women in tech events, singing bad songs really loudly at karaoke, and navigating her way through motherhood with her two daughters.
Laura's keynote is at 9:30 AM on Day 2
About Andrew & Pete
Andrew and Pete are the fun content marketing duo who help solopreneurs and small businesses to create insanely shareable content that builds brands people love, through their membership community - ATOMIC. They won the 'Digital and Social Media Company of the Year Award', and also 'Business Personality of the Year Award'. As international keynote speakers they have been featured on sites such as Social Media Examiner, Entrepreneur on Fire, Convince and Covert, Kim Garst and Huffington Post, and are authors of the hit book, 'The Hippo Campus'. You can find out more about them at: www.andrewandpete.com
Damon charts the strategic, marketing and product priorities for Xero's accountants, bookkeepers and advisors. He is passionate about building a winning experience that delivers beautiful products and practice growth. Damon is an international fintech leader and has delivered cutting-edge digital marketing and payments technology solutions for over 15 years. He has held senior commercial, product and marketing roles at American Express and Visa Europe. Prior to Xero, he rose to Global Head of Product at FTSE100 global payments processor, Worldpay. Damon loves sports, new technologies, science and business growth. He is a native New Zealander and University of Otago alumnus, and now lives in Buckinghamshire, UK with his wife and two young daughters.
Ashley developed his accounting expertise in the construction industry. Then in 2012, he joined Xero in the Customer Experience team. Today, he combines his accounting and AAT lecturing experience within the Xero Education team – and delivers best-in-class educational content to a wide range of Xero customers. He has a passion for technology and loves helping users make the most of their Xero experience.
Vikki helps create and deliver world-class educational content for Xero users across the UK and EMEA. She is a Chartered Certified Accountant and was previously the Managing Director for the Accounting and Law School at BPP Cambridge.
Shachar is a serial entrepreneur, passionate about using technology to improve lives. He is Founder and CEO of Curve - one of the UK's highest profile fintech startups.
Shachar founded Curve to give people a simpler, smarter way to manage their financial life. It allows people to spend from all their bank accounts and cards through one smart Curve card, connected to an even smarter app. Cardholders can see all their business and personal spend in one place, cut out bank fees on business trips, make their existing cards more secure, manage cash flow with 'financial time travel', and never worry about doing their expenses again.
Colin is currently the Head of Partnerships at iwoca, the award-winning alternative lender. He is responsible for growing iwoca's loan book through partnerships, and oversees collaborations with the likes of NatWest/RBS, Tide, Xero and Funding Options. He is also responsible for sales through commercial finance brokers and accountant referrals.
Prior to joining iwoca, Colin was the Commercial & Product Director, at Redbus Media Group, a specialist media owner, where he was responsible for partnerships with Tesco, Asda and Sainsbury's. Colin started his career as a strategy consultant at Accenture and has also worked in commercial roles at Littlewoods Gaming and betfair.
Doug LaBahn is responsible for Xero’s global partner and product marketing programs. He has a PhD in marketing and is the author of Xero’s partner benchmarking series. Doug has been leading innovation, product management, marketing and partner programmes at global software, best practices and information services companies for over 20 years. At age 27, Doug received his PhD and became university professor. He’s been discovering and sharing the most effective ways to grow advisory firms serving small businesses ever since.
Ben joined Xero in 2014 to help drive the digitisation of accounting firms and their small business clients in Perth. Then in 2016, he moved to London to build platform partnerships that give users access to world-class connected apps with Xero. Outside of work, Ben loves to swim laps, binge-listen to SaaS and fintech podcasts, and sample the new food truck scene in London.
James leads Xero’s thriving app partner ecosystem. He’s the point person to onboard new partners, manage current partners and deliver quality integrations throughout. He’s passionate about all things API – and he taps into his technical background to help developers leverage the Xero API to solve small business problems through seamless software integrations.
Guy is passionate about seeing entrepreneurs and SMBs succeed. That’s why he joined Xero in 2015 to help champion a smarter way to do business. He currently leads product marketing within the Partner team – with a focus on building a thriving ecosystem around Xero HQ – and enables accounting and bookkeeping partners to do amazing work and rethink how they run their practices. Guy previously worked across a number of sectors, including telecommunications, fintech and non-profit. He even successfully started and sold his first company at 19. In his spare time, he is an avid cyclist and helps non-profits improve their governance.
Aaron brought his project and operations management experience to Xero San Francisco in May 2017. As Product Manager for UK Payroll, he focuses on the UK pension and employee setup experiences. He also led Xero Payroll's global migration to AWS last year. Aaron has a real passion for improving the payroll experience for accountants, bookkeepers and small businesses. That’s why he’s always eager to get feedback and identify how Xero can solve critical payroll challenges.