Xero’s New UK Managing Director

Xero announced today the appointment of a new managing director for the UK operation.

Reading through the announcement I reflected on a couple of things that have continued to impress me with Xero. One has been their clear vision and their ability to communicate that vision simply to employees, small businesses, accountants, banks, and other stakeholders. They have a clear and exciting BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal). A second thing that continues to impress me has been their ability to build around that vision an excellent team of capable, experienced, high-calibre individuals. Once again, I am impressed by the calibre of the appointment to the head of the UK operation.

I look forward to watching Xero enhance their foothold in the UK against Sage!

Disclosure: I am a Xero shareholder and one of many delighted Xero customers!

6 thoughts on “Xero’s New UK Managing Director”

  1. Kelvin, how much better is Xero’s service and software than its competitors and will that relate into revenue and profit?

    If so what do you think the time frame would be for profit and is Xero’s technology so far ahead of the pack that some little upstart wont just swoop in and get an edge?


    Kelvin Hartnall Reply:

    Interesting questions. Now that they have raised additional capital and have enough for a few years of additional losses, I am no longer concerned about time to profitability. In this case they are the start-up swooping in with an edge, so the interesting question will be how much of the market they can capture from the incumbents. It is a question of the amount of growth possible for Xero (currently very rapid) and a question of future sustainable margins. I have some thoughts around this which I hope at some point to blog further on at some point.


  2. I am looking for questions from Xero followers for a Q & A with Rod Drury. Have any Kelvin?


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    Kelvin Hartnall Reply:

    I have a concern about focus at Xero at the moment and maybe you can address this in your Q&A. I am concerned about maintaining focus on building the best online accounting system for the SME market. I believe there is a significant opportunity here, but that there is still a lot to do to maintain Xero’s position as a leading SME accounting solution. For example, reporting is still very rudimentary, there is no stock control, the functionality in a number of the modules is quite basic, etc… I have been concerned with the amount of time being spent on building Xero Personal which is a completely different target market. I understand that for many SMEs there is a fine line between personal accounting and their business accounting, but I think that providing a solution to solve this for small business owners doesn’t require all the Xero Personal features. E.g. maybe it just requires an add-on to the Expense Claim module to allow expenses to be pulled out of a personal creditcard statement, etc…

    I am still a Xero investor as well as customer, and I find a number of the features of the product extremely innovative. My only concern is that they do not divide their focus between two very different markets.


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