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Leadership

Sage Leadership Team

Leadership

Sage Leadership Team

Members of the leadership team who are on the Executive Committee are denoted by (ExCo) after their titles.

Steve Hare

Chief executive officer (ExCo)

Steve joined Sage in January 2014, having previously been operating partner and co-head of the Portfolio Support Group at the private equity firm Apax Partners, which he joined in 2009. Prior to this Steve built over 10 years’ experience leading the finance function for three listed UK companies, culminating as chief financial officer for FTSE 100 company Invensys plc, the global technology-related business, from 2006 to 2009. Between 2004 and 2006 he was group finance director for Spectris plc, the FTSE 250 precision instrumentation and controls company, and from 1997 to 2003 he was with Marconi PLC, acting as chief financial officer from 2001.

 

Steve qualified as a chartered accountant in 1985 with Ernst & Whinney, now part of EY, and holds a bachelor of commerce degree from Liverpool University.

 

You can follow Steve on Twitter @SteveHare.

 

Jonathan Howell

Chief financial officer (ExCo)

Jonathan joined the board as an independent non-executive director on 15 May 2013 and served as chair of the Audit and Risk Committee from November 2013 until December 2018. He was subsequently appointed as our chief financial officer on 4 December 2018, having stepped down from his role as group finance director of Close Brothers Group plc which he held for 10 years. Prior to that, Jonathan held the same position at the London Stock Exchange Group plc since 1999. He has also been a non-executive director of EMAP plc and chair of FTSE International. The early part of Jonathan’s career was at PwC where he qualified as a chartered accountant. He has been appointed as non-executive director to the Board of Experian plc with effect from 1 May 2021.

Derk Bleeker

Chief corporate development officer (ExCo)

Derk is responsible for portfolio simplification, M&A and business planning. In his role as chief corporate development officer, he will drive the accelerated transformation of our product portfolio to create a focused and high-growth SaaS company. Derk joined Sage in 2014 and has led corporate development and commercial finance. Derk’s previous roles include director, corporate development for Europe, at Danaher, and associate director at HgCapital.

You can follow Derk on Twitter @BleekerDerk

Vicki Bradin

General counsel and company secretary (ExCo)

Vicki joined Sage in 2016 from former FTSE 250 software company Misys (now Finastra), where she was Associate General Counsel. In her role at Misys, Vicki was responsible for M&A, litigation, risk, IP and more.

After graduating from Nottingham University, Vicki qualified as a solicitor in the City of London. Vicki spent her early career working as a corporate lawyer in global and magic circle law firms before moving in-house working in large multi-nationals and UK public limited companies, helping grow and transform businesses whilst managing their regulatory and litigation risk. 

You can follow Vicki on Twitter @vickibradin.

Amanda Cusdin

Chief people officer (ExCo)

Amanda became chief people officer in September 2018, a role she started on an interim basis in October 2017. She joined Sage in March 2015 to lead first the people transformation across Sage Functions and then latterly as executive vice president people business partners - leading the regional and functional generalist people teams across all of Sage locations.

As well as leading our global People function, Amanda has overall executive accountability for Sage’s Sustainability and Society strategy. Sage’s goal is to use its time, technology and experience to tackle societal and economic inequality, support a new generation of diverse and sustainable businesses and play its role in tackling the climate crisis. This includes giving 30,000 working days to volunteering activities in 2022, as part of Sage Foundation, and our commitment to be Net Zero by 2040 across our operations and supply chain, with an interim step to reduce carbon emissions by 50% by 2030.

Amanda has eighteen years of HR experience across a number of global FTSE organisations, including manufacturing, engineering and projects businesses where she focused on supporting executive leaders to drive change and transformation. During her career to date Amanda has built extensive experience across North America, Latin America, Asia and Europe. She has led in all aspects of human resources but specifically in M&A, growth in new geographies and working across cultures and matrix organisations. Amanda has also specialised in talent development to executive level.

Passionate about developing talent and leadership and creating truly inclusive organisations which promote diversity, Amanda has a Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Warwick and postgraduate qualifications in Human Resources Management.

You can follow Amanda on Twitter @AmandaCusdinHR

Sue Goble

Chief customer success officer (ExCo)

Sue's role at Sage is accountable for ensuring customer centricity is at the heart of the business, built into strategy and executed flawlessly through our operations. Working closely with the country MDs, Sue will set the strategy and governance for customer services and customer success on a global basis. Previously, Sue was responsible for Business Operations, landing major programmes successfully across the organisation. Sue has had a distinguished career at a range of cloud companies including roles as CEO of the Cloud division of Iris Software Group; general manager for International at cloud consulting business Bluewolf; and senior roles at Salesforce and Siebel.

You can follow Sue on Twitter @suegoble

Aaron Harris

Aaron Harris

Chief technology officer (ExCo)

Responsible for Sage’s technology strategy and software architecture, Aaron Harris has more than 20 years of high-tech engineering experience in business applications and software development strategies.

Previously, a founding leader of Sage Intacct, which was acquired by Sage in 2017, Harris led the company's product vision and technology direction, establishing Sage Intacct as the innovation leader in cloud financial management solutions.

You can follow Aaron on Twitter @AaronRHarris

Cath Keers

Chief marketing officer (ExCo)

Cath joined the Sage Board on 1 July 2017 as an independent non-executive director, and then served as a non-independent non-executive director from April 2020 to June 2020.

Cath was subsequently appointed chief marketing officer, responsible for the global strategy and governance across all of Sage’s marketing – including brand, communications, events, digital channels, and marketing operations. She previously held several senior executive roles at BT Group, O2, and as Chairman of Tesco Mobile.  

Cath’s non-executive experience includes advisory roles at TalkTalk, Bupa, Funding Circle Holdings plc and smaller companies including Ustwo and Trusted House Sitters.
 
Lee Perkins

Lee Perkins

Chief operating officer (ExCo)

Lee leads our regional businesses and our Global Product Organisation comprising; Product Marketing, Product Management and Product Engineering. Lee returned to Sage in early 2018 having originally joined Sage in 2011, serving as managing director of the UK & Ireland until early 2016.

Lee has over 20 years’ commercial and general management experience in public and private equity backed businesses, most recently as CEO of Metronet and prior to joining Sage, in executive leadership roles at Tech Data and Computacenter.

You can follow Lee on Twitter @_leeperkins

Walid Abu-Hadba

Chief product officer
 
Walid joined Sage in May 2021, having previously spent 20 years at Microsoft, where he was corporate vice president responsible for the developer and platform evangelism group, before joining ANSYS INC as chief product officer. Most recently he was senior vice president, Oracle Developer Tools. He also holds several senior board advisor roles in the technology sector and patents in the field of AI.
 
Walid brings with him extensive industry experience and leadership skills. He is passionate about driving strategy and building the culture that delivers tangible, customer-centric solutions. 
 

Stanimira Koleva

Executive vice president, international markets

Stanimira joined Sage in March 2021. Stanimira is responsible for running the company’s operations across Continental Europe, Iberia, Middle East, Africa and APAC and Australia. Stanimira and her team are focused on delivering superior outcomes for the customers, while driving technology innovation cycles and Cloud adoption, across the wide and diverse geographies, industries and customer segments.

A technology industry veteran, Koleva brings more than 27 years of experience managing business operations, product and solutions innovations and go-to-market for multinational technology companies across the globe. In her career, she has held multiple senior management roles across both Europe, Asia, Middle East and Africa regions. She has previously served at Here Technlogies APAC, Citrix APJC, Microsoft APAC, Cisco in Asia Pacific and Europe as well as 3Com operations both in Europe and Asia Pacific regions.

Koleva holds Master’s degrees in Computer Science and Business Administration, both from Technical University in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Pacôme Lesage

Managing director, Sage Southern Europe (France, Belgium, Morocco) 

Pacôme Lesage joined Sage in 2020 as VP products & engineering. He then led Sage's Strategic Products and Services as well as the Go to Market. 

In 2021, Pacôme was appointed managing director of Sage Southern Europe, where he is responsible for growing Sage’s business in the region. He will rely on the strength of our network of partners and the expertise of our colleagues to achieve his vision of providing enterprises with the best solutions to fully reach their growth potential.   
 
Pacôme has more than 20 years of expertise and has worked for many French and international companies where he held positions as director of product marketing, sales and technology at Alcatel, Microsoft, SNCF, and Bouygues-Telecom. He also worked in several start-ups performing roles of managing director, and VP marketing. 

You can follow Pacôme on Twitter @LesagePacome.
 

Pieter Bensch

Managing director, Australia, Asia, Africa and Middle East

As managing director of Sage in Australia, Asia, Africa and Middle East, Pieter Bensch is responsible for growing Sage’s business across the region and executing its vision of disrupting and leading the market for cloud-based payroll and accounting solutions. He has 26 years of industry experience and has held leadership roles in complex technology businesses across Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Pieter joins Sage from HPE (Hewlett-Packard Enterprise), where he was the Managing Director for South Africa. Prior to joining HP, Pieter held a range of senior positions at Oracle, including Vice-President of Oracle Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), Vice-President of Customer Support for MEA and Vice-President and Managing Director of Oracle SA.

You can follow Pieter on Twitter @PieterBensch.

Nancy Harris

Managing director, North America

Nancy Harris has more than 30 years’ experience in sales, marketing and partner development, successfully leading large SaaS and enterprise software companies including BMC Software and Asure Software. Nancy joined Sage in 2011, serving as vice president and general manager of Sage 50 Accounting, Canadian Edition and later as managing director of the company’s Canadian business. Today, Nancy resides in the U.S. and is managing director of Sage North America.

You can follow Nancy on Twitter @SageNancyHarris

Luis Pardo

Managing director, Sage Iberia

After holding positions in different multinational sectors, Luis joined Sage in 2001, occupying a range of positions in Sage’s European Business. Luis has been managing director of Sage Iberia – overseeing general management of Spain and Portugal – since 2014. Luis is a member of the Business Action Council of CEOE and the British Chamber of Commerce in Spain’s Investment Committee. Among other honors, Luis has been awarded the EU Leadership Award by the EU Business School and the prestigious Gold Star by the Institute For Professional Excellence.

You can follow Luis on Twitter @luispardo1

Paul Struthers

Managing director, UK and Ireland

Paul Struthers has more than 20 years’ technology experience. Previously, Sage’s managing director, Canada and EVP & GM, Medium Segment Cloud Connected Solutions, Paul Struthers is now responsible for leading Sage in its home market of the UK and in Ireland.

Before joining Sage, Paul spent 15 years at global software solutions company Amdocs, and prior to this managed the ERP consulting practice at RSA companies, where he also led and supported over 20 projects for small and medium-sized businesses in the U.S. and Canada.

You can follow Paul on Twitter @strutherspaul

Dan Miller

EVP medium segment (interim)

Dan is a proven leader in the cloud financial management industry. For more than 20 years, he has led successful product organisations with his expertise in product strategy, product management, experience design, engineering and customer education. Dan leads the medium business segment for Sage, supporting customer, partners and colleagues across native and cloud-connected products.

Sage Intacct alumnus, Dan led the product organisation’s growth from a small team to a business with multiple successful product lines, serving customers across industries. Prior to Sage Intacct, Dan had a long career with Intuit. 

Neal Watkins

EVP small segment

Neal joined Sage in April 2020, having previously been chief product officer at BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, which he joined in 2015. Neal is responsible for leading the small segment category teams to provide products, solutions, and clear customer journeys for those owner-run/small organisations who are increasingly looking to adopt emerging technology while managing costs and cashflow.

He has 25 years’ software and engineering experience, including 11 years at Symantec in a number of senior roles across product management and development as well as pre-sales.

You can follow Neal on Twitter @neal_watkins.
 

Aziz Benmalek

EVP partners & alliances

Aziz joined Sage in December 2020, having previously spent two years as vice president of Worldwide Partners, Business Development and channel chief at Splunk. Prior to this Aziz also gained 20 years’ experience at Microsoft in various roles, including vice president of the SaaS, Cloud and Hosting Business Unit, leading the vision, strategy, sales, business development, technical enablement and marketing.
 
Aziz has extensive worldwide experience in the technology industry. He is passionate about cloud and SaaS and he is skilled at leading multiple business segments in mature and emerging markets across North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

Klaus-Michael Vogelberg

Chief architect and technology advisor

In 2019 Klaus-Michael took on this critical role in shaping the technology agenda at Sage, having previously served as chief technology officer from 2007.

Klaus-Michael joined us when Sage acquired the German KHK Software group in 1997. Having been R&D director and a partner of that business, Klaus-Michael went on to act as R&D director for Sage in the UK and Ireland from 2004 to 2007. Klaus-Michael is based in the UK.

You can follow Klaus on Twitter @Kvogelberg

Amy Lawson

EVP, corporate affairs

Amy is responsible for communications and corporate affairs at Sage, responsible for internal and external reputation and engagement. She sets the global communications strategy across PR, colleague communications, public affairs and analyst relations. 

Previously, Amy was head of the Cabinet Office media operation as a civil servant for Her Majesty’s Government and was head of communications for Channel 4 News, where she was responsible for protecting and promoting the reputation of the national news programme, its journalism and its presenters.

You can follow Amy on Twitter @amyllawson

Date Document
18 January 2019 Terms of Reference for the Executive Committee