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Sage appoints Walid Abu-Hadba and Stanimira Koleva to Chief Product Officer and EVP of International Roles

  • Microsoft alumnus to lead Sage’s global product development strategy
  • Newly created international role reflects Sage’s commitment to growth outside its core markets

London, May 17, 2021 – Sage, the market leader for cloud business management solutions, has appointed Walid Abu-Hadba, a Microsoft and Oracle veteran with over 30 years' experience in product innovation, to the role of Chief Product Officer. Stanimira Koleva is appointed to the newly created role of EVP International. Both roles and are effective immediately. 

Walid will focus his deep technical understanding and rich commercial experience on ensuring that Sage is fully optimised to serve the needs of its partners and 2 million global customers. He will build on the growth of Sage Business Cloud, ensuring Sage continues to deliver innovative solutions that support customers at every stage of their business journey. 

Stanimira Koleva will lead Sage international markets outside the UKI and North America. She will focus on driving the delivery of great outcomes for customers and partners, leading the team of Managing Directors in Central Europe, Southern Europe, Iberia, Africa & Middle East and Asia Pacific. 

Lee Perkins, COO, Sage, “Our customers are clear that the adaptations they’ve made to their businesses over the last 12 months have made them more effective and efficient. They are confident for the future and they trust Sage to support their ambition for growth. The appointments of Walid and Stanimira ensure we are well placed to fulfil our commitment; to deliver world-class products and services that support our customers as they continue to digitise their businesses.”

Walid 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. Walid holds several senior board advisor roles in the technology sector and patents in the field of AI. Walid will work closely with Sage CTO, Aaron Harris. 

Walid said, “I have watched Sage with interest for several years, and I recognise this for the exciting opportunity it is. My focus will be on driving product strategy and innovation that both differentiates us from our competitors and delights our customers. I look forward to leading the product team as we build for the future – providing both industry specialism and best in class cloud products that meet customers where they work.”

Stanimira has 30 years’ experience helping software vendors build successful long-term partner and customer programs across Europe and Asia focussing on customers success through technology. She joins Sage from HERE Technologies, having previously held senior leadership roles at Citrix, Software AG, Microsoft and Cisco.  Stanimira holds a Masters degree in Electronics Engineering and an MBA.

On joining Sage Stanimira said, “SMEs will be a driving force in the global economic reboot as their global appetite for more efficient and adaptable ways of working through technology is unleashed.  This SME confidence, coupled with Sage’s strong performance, make it an exciting time to join the Sage family.  I’m looking forward to playing a role in supporting our customers and partners, and helping new ones, with the tools they need to build for the future.”

These two new appointments, reporting to the COO, reflect the opportunity Sage sees across its international markets and with Sage Business Cloud and reflects its commitment to invest in sales and marketing and research and development in its FY20 full year results.

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About Sage  

Sage is the global market leader for technology that provides small and medium businesses with the visibility, flexibility and efficiency to manage finances, operations and people. With our partners, Sage is trusted by millions of customers worldwide to deliver the best cloud technology and support. Our years of experience mean that our colleagues and partners understand how to serve our customers and communities through the good, and more challenging times. We are here to help, with practical advice, solutions, expertise and insight.