In a recent conversation with a chief technology officer, he asserted all digital technology changes in his organisation were being led by IT and not by marketing. It made me wonder: How long a marketing function like this could survive?
Former Commonwealth Bank CMO, Andy Lark, has been appointed chief marketing officer at cloud-based accounting software company, Xero.
Lark’s 25-year career include stints in the US and Europe, where he was chief marketing and communications officer for Dell Enterprise, Sun Microsystems and Nortel. He has also worked for startups such as LogLogic.
He is credited with propelling CommBank’s brand relaunch and aggressive push into the digital, mobile and social spaces.
In a statement, Xero said Lark will lead its global marketing strategy when he joins the team in November. Xero, a New Zealand-born company which launched in 2006, claims to now have 371,000 customers globally.
A company spokesperson confirmed Lark’s appointment follows the departure of Xero’s first global head of marketing, Jeremy Wood, several months ago, but said Lark will take an even more strategic, leadership role as the group expands its US presence.
“As we continue to accelerate our growth globally, adding executives of Andy’s calibre demonstrates our ability to attract world-class talent and commitment to bringing Xero to more small businesses than any other platform,” Xero CEO, Rod Drury, said.
“Andy has been involved with Xero since the beginning as a sounding board and now as part of our leadership team he will be able to play a direct role in driving out momentum, brand and product through the next phase of growth.”
Lark said he was looking forward to being able to more directly contribute to accelerating the growth of the Xero businesses globally and supporting small businesses.
“As a Xero customer I’ve seen the impact it has on cashflow and business performance. Xero is positive proof of the power of software born in the cloud.”
In its fresh ASX statement, the company announced its global customer base had grown 76 per cent in the last 12 months, with 158,000 customers now using its software in Australia. Total subscription revenue for the six months to 30 September 2014 sat at $52 million.
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