February 20, 2018 – The role of chief revenue officer has changed dramatically over the last several years. CROs are quickly becoming mission-critical innovators for companies that look to dominate a market first and fastest, according to recruiters. The demand for these financial leaders is growing and executive search firms have been busy filling these roles.
Imperva, a NASDAQ-traded cybersecurity company, recently announced that its chief revenue officer, Mike Mooney, resigned to pursue other interests. The Redwood Shores, CA-based organization has turned to Heidrick & Struggles to find his replacement.
“We are fortunate to have very seasoned sales leaders who will help ensure continuity while we conduct our search,” said Chris Hylen, president and chief executive officer of Imperva. “We are looking for a global sales leader to help us take the company to the next level as we continue our transformation.”
“To ensure a smooth transition, we have formed a sales leadership council focused on execution and accelerating our go-to-market strategy, and I am confident that Imperva will remain on track to deliver profitable growth,” he said.
Chief Revenue Officer Recruitment Trends
Top drawer CROs have been seen mostly in start-ups and smaller businesses to keep an eye on the bottom line while the rest of the C-level team expand key partnerships, look for growth opportunities or source funding. That’s changing as larger businesses now view the CRO post as an essential, long term role ….. Here’s some further reading from Hunt Scanlon Media.
Why Chief Revenue Officers Are Rising In Influence
The role of chief revenue officers had changed dramatically over the course of the last several years, and they are quickly becoming mission-critical innovators for companies that look to dominate a market first and fastest.
Imperva is a cybersecurity leader that delivers best-in-class solutions to protect data and applications on-premises, in the cloud, and across hybrid environments.
In October, Imperva also tapped Heidrick to replace its outgoing CFO Terry Schmid, who also stepped down to pursue other interests. Aaron Kuan, the company’s vice president of financial planning and analysis, is serving as interim CFO while the search is underway.
Recruiting Chief Revenue Officers
“The CRO has been, until recently, a role seen mostly in start-ups and smaller businesses to keep an eye on the bottom line while the rest of the C-level team grew key partnerships, looked for growth opportunities or sourced funding,” said Katherine Young, president and managing partner of boutique recruiting firm Young Search Partners. “Now, larger businesses that are past the initial growth hurdle are viewing the CRO post as an essential, longer-term role, the key to aligning departments company-wide in a concerted effort to raise revenue.”
“As positions in companies evolve, the CRO may be referred to (or confused most often with) the chief sales and marketing officer or chief development officer, but the real distinction is the broader go-to-market strategy that the CRO develops and executes around every aspect of revenue generation and growth,” Ms. Young said. “A chief revenue officer in today’s new world of media and technology, is a new breed. Expertise and passion as a company builder are needed to be successful in the CRO role, one who can broker any number of diverse go-to-market strategies through to scale.”
Hunt Scanlon Media has reported on a number of search firms tracking down chief revenue officers for their clients. Here’s a look at searches either underway or recently completed:
Acertitude placed Reza Ghorieshi as CRO of Indigo Energy, a wholesale provider of petroleum products and renewable-fuel solutions based in Gainesville, GA. Rick DeRose, Acertitude founder and managing partner, led the search along with partner Tom Dougherty.
McDermott & Bull recruited Mollie Hunter as chief revenue officer with Ease, a leading provider of process performance solutions. The search was led by partner Craig Lipus, principal consultant Garrett Lipus, senior recruiting associate Tara Steven, and recruiting associate Chris Pring. Ms. Hunter has over thirty years of software sales experience.
Ross & Company has placed Tom McNamara as chief revenue officer of Apixio, a data science company focused on healthcare. Managing partner Jim O’Sullivan led the assignment. Mr. McNamara has 25 years of experience building successful sales organizations for healthcare technology and analytics companies. This expansion came after the close of $19.3 million in Series D funding led by SSM Partners.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Will Schatz, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media