Thursday, May 6, 2010

Rod Drury ready for the long-haul with Xero

I take a number of things away from an interview I did with Xero Ltd [XRO.NZ] Rod Drury but the two things that stick in my mind are his deep passion for the business and the fact that he is in it for the long haul.

Previous to this disclosure most of us thought he was trying to build a brand to eventually flog it off but Rod has some long term goals to achieve:

Share Investor
- "Was the intention of yourself and the Xero board to build the company up as a brand with the express purpose of selling, along the lines of say 42 Below?"


Rod Drury - "No. Having sold businesses before, this time we want to grow a long term business. The market is really just starting and with accelerators like iPads, Google's up coming Chrome operating system we think that things are only just getting exciting."

While there is some merit in building a brand for someone else to buy in the short-term, more money will be made from a business for its shareholders - if it is based on good premise and run well - when the the long-term game is played. Xero has an advantage there playing the long term game.

Rod's overriding passion for his business is a motivation for those around him and the business as a whole because it provides an impetus for employees to manage themselves in a similar way and radiates out to Xero consumers - hey passion is contagious!!

I still wouldn't touch Xero with a barge pole though, not because I don't think the company is a good one, but as an investment it is one of the riskier ones for those individuals who understand the sector in which Xero operates. I still don't fully understand Xero and what they do and I like to invest in companies in which I know what they do and how they do it. I think you have to be a tech head or a user of Xero products to be able to know it well. Then if you are in that position and do know the company well and therefore see where they are going I dont blame you for investing .

Having said that I will reserve my final judgment for the promised profit for Xero in 2011 indicated by Xero management at their annual meeting last year.

I would like to publicly thank Rod for participating in the Q & A, for whatever you think of his company we don't get enough leaders of our public companies willing to put themselves under this much scrutiny.

I enjoyed the experience immensely.


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Xero For Dummies (For Dummies (Business & Personal Finance))Xero For Dummies (For Dummies (Business & Personal Finance)) by Heather Smith
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