Technology executive and former SAP leader, Melissa Di Donato, has been named chief executive officer of SUSE in a move that will herald the next phase of growth and momentum for the world’s largest independent open source software company.
Prior to SUSE, Di Donato was chief operating officer and chief revenue officer at SAP where she was responsible for the worldwide revenue, profit and customer satisfaction of the company’s digital core solutions. She also held senior executive positions at Salesforce and was recognized for her contributions to growing global organizations by winning the 2018 Digital Masters Award for Excellence in Commercial Management.
Donato worked as Technology Group chair of the 30% Club – an organization with the goal of achieving 30 percent female directors on S&P 100 boards by 2020. She also holds prominent positions in other organizations, including Notion Capital, and is a trustee for charity Founders4Schools.
UK-based Di Donato will be SUSE’s first female CEO, effective August 5.
“There is no greater honor than to lead SUSE into its next chapter of accelerated growth and corporate development,” Di Donato said. “SUSE is at the cusp of a historic shift as open source software is now a critical part of any thriving enterprise’s core business strategy. We are well-positioned to emerge as the clear leader of this shift, with our ability to power digital transformation for our customers at their own pace and with agile, enterprise-grade open source solutions, edge to core to cloud.”
Di Donato succeeds Nils Brauckmann, who announced his retirement. During his tenure as CEO of SUSE, Brauckmann delivered eight years of continuous expansion including a substantial increase during FY18, a year which saw record-breaking revenues.
Presiding over SUSE’s transition to a standalone organization is Brauckmann’s final accomplishment as CEO as he hands over the reins to a new CEO in an aptly timed leadership succession.
“I am incredibly proud of SUSE’s progress and growth over the last eight years, which has culminated in it securing independent status,” Brauckmann said. “With this chapter of SUSE’s corporate development complete, I could not be more pleased to hand off the leadership of SUSE to Melissa. She is a proven and dynamic change agent, and many of her achievements have occurred in subscription businesses that exist in high-growth cloud environments. Melissa is someone I am confident will lead SUSE to realize its fullest potential.”
“In Melissa Di Donato I am confident we have found an outstanding CEO with a proven track record of success that speaks for itself. It is expected that SUSE’s delivery against its mission will gain pace under Melissa’s leadership,” said Jonas Persson, Chairman of SUSE’s Board.
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