Board of directors
David Thodey AO
CHAIR OF THE BOARD
Chair since February 2020
Independent director since June 2019
Nominations Committee (Chair)
People and Remuneration Committee
David is a business leader focused on innovation, technology and telecommunications, with more than 30 years experience creating brand and shareholder value. He is chairman of Tyro, Australia’s only independent EFTPOS provider, and a non-executive director of Ramsay Health Care, a global hospital group, as well a chair of the Xero board of directors.
David had a successful executive career as CEO of Telstra, a significant Australian telecommunications company, and of IBM Australia and New Zealand. In 2017, David was made an Officer of the Order (AO) in the General Division of the Order of Australia.
Independent director since October 2020
People and Remuneration Committee
Steven is an entrepreneur and professional director with more than 25 years’ experience in creating and delivering products within the technology and accounting software industries. Steven is a non-executive director of Blucora, a provider of technology-enabled financial solutions, and Ruby Receptionists, a virtual customer engagement solution provider.
Steven has held a range of senior executive roles, including at GoDaddy, the world’s largest services platform for entrepreneurs, where most recently he was chief product officer. Prior to this, Steven was the CEO of Outright, an online bookkeeping service, which was acquired by GoDaddy. Steven has also held various senior management roles at Intuit including vice president of strategy and innovation for the small business division. Steven holds a bachelor of arts degree in physics from the University of North Carolina and a master of business administration from Stanford University.
Independent director since April 2020
Audit and Risk Management Committee (Chair)
People and Remuneration Committee
Mark is an experienced professional director with more than 20 years of international experience in corporate finance and investment banking. Mark is currently a non-executive director of ACC (NZ government crown entity), Chorus, and Z Energy (both NZX and ASX listed). He is also chair of Milford Asset Management.
Mark was at Deutsche Bank for 10 years, initially based in Sydney in mergers and acquisitions, then in London as a managing director and co-head of a European M&A industry group. Mark holds a bachelor of business studies (accounting and finance) degree from Massey University New Zealand, is a member of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, a chartered member of the New Zealand Institute of Directors and a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
FOUNDER AND NON-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Director since July 2006
For more than a decade, Rod led Xero to be a global software business and S&P/ASX 100 company. Rod started his career at Ernst & Young and went on to establish and lead a number of innovative technology businesses. Rod was formerly an independent director of the NZX and Trade Me. At the Deloitte Top 200 Awards in 2017, Rod was named Visionary Leader of the Year. He was named Ernst & Young New Zealand Entrepreneur of the Year in 2013, and is a member of the New Zealand Hi-Tech Hall of Fame.
Independent director since April 2014
Audit and Risk Management Committee
Lee has more than 20 years’ experience in the financial services industry. She has held senior executive roles in marketing, strategy and risk in large scale customer-facing businesses.
In 2020, Lee joined the global executive team at Afterpay where she’s responsible for driving the business’ strategy for new platforms, products and services. Lee has been recognised by IBM as one of 40 women leaders in artificial intelligence across the globe for her work in delivering world-first innovations. Lee holds a bachelor of business from Auckland University of Technology, and is an alumni of Berkeley Haas School of Business. She is also a member of Chief Executive Women, which represents Australia’s most senior and distinguished female leaders.
Independent director since February 2022
Audit and Risk Management Committee
Brian is a professional director who has extensive experience as an executive and CEO driving growth and innovation for leading technology, software-as-a-service, and cloud-based companies. His experience includes leading Pandora Media, a streaming music provider in the US, and aQuantive, a digital marketing services and technology company that was acquired by Microsoft.
Brian is a non-executive director of Frontdoor Inc, a platform for home services, and is presiding director on the board of The New York Times. He was previously a director of Chewy Inc, Grubhub Inc,and Teladoc Health Inc.
Brian was included in the 2019 National Association of Corporate Directors Directorship 100, which each year recognises the most influential board members. He holds a bachelor of arts with honours in economics from Harvard College and a masters in business administration from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Dale Murray CBE
Independent director since April 2018
Audit and Risk Management Committee
Dale is a former technology entrepreneur who co-founded mobile pioneer Omega Logic in 1999, which co-launched prepay top-ups in the UK. Dale led the growth of top-up transactions to £450m within five years. She then turned to investing and advising start-ups and won the British Angel Investor of the Year award in 2011.
Dale is a non-executive director at the Cranemere Group, Jupiter Fund Management, Rated People and LendInvest, and is a board advisor to Accelerate:Her. She was formerly a non-executive director and Trustee for the Peter Jones Foundation, a non-executive director at Sussex Place Ventures and the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills. She holds a master of business ddministration degree from the London Business School and served on the Business Taskforce on EU Redtape for the British Prime Minister in 2013.
Dale was made Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) by Her Majesty the Queen in 2013 for services to business.
Independent director since February 2017
People and Remuneration Committee (Chair)
Susan is an experienced business leader with a particular interest in helping companies to drive growth through technology, innovation and organisational culture. Susan is the chair of Vista Group and an independent director of Property for Industry, Arvida Group and Craigs Investment Partners.
Susan is also a board member of non-profit Global Women and was previously a member of the New Zealand Markets Disciplinary Tribunal. Susan is a past director of ASB Bank and was a past ministerial appointee to the National Advisory Council for the Employment of Women. Susan is founding co-chair and a shareholder in fast-growing health and wellness company Organic Initiative Limited.
Damien is a legal and governance professional and leader with more than 20 years’ experience advising senior management and boards. Prior to joining Xero Damien was company secretary and deputy group general counsel at Telstra. Damien holds a bachelor of laws (honours) and a bachelor of economics from the Australian National University. He is a fellow of the Governance Institute of Australia and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Steve leads the global growth and performance of Xero. With more than 30 years’ experience in global technology and digital media, Steve has worked in leading international businesses including Apple, IBM and Microsoft. Steve led the growth of online media business Ninemsn from startup to industry leader as the company’s CEO. Steve previously served on the boards of Telstra, David Jones and Medibank, and has an honours degree in civil engineering from the University of New South Wales, Australia.
CHIEF PRODUCT OFFICER
Anna leads Xero’s product teams, spearheading product management, development, design, and marketing to bring more exciting Xero features to partners and small businesses. Anna has a wealth of experience in online financial services and operations. Before joining Xero as managing director for New Zealand in 2016, Anna led internet banking at ASB and the digital first strategy at Spark. Anna has a bachelor’s degree and a postgraduate diploma in commerce from the University of Auckland.
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
Kirsty leads Xero’s global financial team. She drives financial outcomes, actively managing the group’s financial performance, optimising the business's balance sheet and communicating the group’s strategic and financial priorities to stakeholders, including investors. She also leads Xero’s global facilities team. Kirsty is a FCA and FCPA with more than 25 years’ global experience in the finance and technology sectors across New Zealand and the UK at companies including PwC, BBC Technology, Jade and Siemens. Kirsty holds a bachelor of commerce and management from Lincoln University.
CHIEF CUSTOMER OFFICER
Rachael is responsible for Xero’s global sales, marketing, communications, and customer functions. Throughout her career she has held leadership positions in marketing, sales, and HR, predominantly in digital and technology companies. Rachael believes customer experience must resonate from the inside out and advocates for positive engagement programs to effectively mobilise the business strategy at scale. Rachael has a masters in applied positive psychology, a masters in business administration, a bachelor of business, and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
CHIEF TECHNOLOGY OFFICER
Mark leads the platform, security, data and automation teams at Xero. He’s responsible for enabling Xero’s technology platform for growth and innovation. Before joining Xero, Mark was the chief technology officer for Microsoft New Zealand and the chief product and technology officer for Trade Me. Mark has a PhD and bachelor of science in chemistry from the University of Canterbury.
CHIEF PEOPLE OFFICER
Nicole leads Xero’s people experience function globally. As an established human resources leader, she has more than 20 years’ experience in human resources strategy development and execution. She delivers organisational people solutions and transformational change programmes. Nicole has worked across the financial services, technology and telecommunications industries for companies including AMP and Microsoft.
CHIEF LEGAL OFFICER
Chaman leads Xero’s legal functions globally. She has more than 20 years’ experience in legal operations, strategy, compliance, governance and risk management. Chaman has previously worked as group general counsel and company secretary for Envato and Lonely Planet Publications. She is qualified in both Australia and the US, and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
CHIEF STRATEGY & CORPORATE DEVELOPMENT OFFICER
Damien leads Xero’s global strategy, corporate development, partnerships and ecosystem teams. Prior to joining Xero, Damien spent nearly 20 years at Deloitte in a number of senior strategy, mergers and acquisitions, and other executive roles. He was a founding partner of Deloitte’s global online and mobile technology practice, Deloitte Digital. Damien has a degree in business from RMIT University in Melbourne and is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Executive leadership: Regional leaders
Alex von Schirmeister
MANAGING DIRECTOR, UNITED KINGDOM & EMEA
Alex is responsible for leading Xero’s operations across the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He has more than 25 years’ of senior leadership experience, having led teams across Europe and Latin America in ecommerce, payments, telecommunications, FMCG and consultancy. Prior to joining Xero, Alex led the European operations for small business payments technology company SumUp. Before that, he held senior leadership positions at Electrocomponents plc and eBay, where he gained exposure to a large constituency of merchant sellers. Alex holds a bachelor of science in business administration, international business from Georgetown University, and an MBA from INSEAD.
MANAGING DIRECTOR, NEW ZEALAND & PACIFIC ISLANDS
Craig is responsible for promoting the small business economy in New Zealand and the Pacific Islands as well as Xero’s relationships with government, financial institutions, and enterprises. Craig joined Xero in the UK where he led the business into markets in Europe, the Middle East and South Africa. Prior to joining Xero, Craig played professional rugby in New Zealand, France, England and Wales.
MANAGING DIRECTOR, AUSTRALIA & ASIA
Joseph was appointed managing director in July 2021, after joining Xero as executive general manager of sales in 2019. Joseph is responsible for driving Xero’s next phase of growth in Australia and Asia. He has worked in roles across a range of sectors in Australia, the UK, the US and Canada. Before joining Xero, he was the chief commercial officer at REA Group. Joseph is a member of the Institute of Company Directors in Australia, and has a bachelor of management degree focused in marketing from the University of South Australia.
Tony is responsible for expanding Xero’s businesses in the Americas. He has 20 years experience in senior leadership positions with global technology companies, including Microsoft Australia, LinkedIn, Spark, SurveyMonkey and Dropbox. He’s also founded a successful cloud-based startup, Business365, aimed at small businesses. Tony holds a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Manitoba and a bachelor of commerce from the University of Auckland. He is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.