SHANNON ZIMMERMAN JOINS SUMMA LINGUAE TECHNOLOGIES AS THE NEW CHIEF REVENUE OFFICER
Summa Linguae Technologies (SLT), the Polish language and technology service provider, last year launched its operations on the Northern American markets. Having acquired two local companies – Canadian Globalme and American GlobalVision (press release here), the SLT’s board started to build a management team to run the American entities. As a result, Shannon Zimmerman has just joined the SLT’s team as Chief Revenue Officer for the Northern American market. What is important, Zimmerman is now also an investor in SLT, alongside with the former owner of Globalme and the v4c fund.
His most important assignment is to generally organize the sales operations for Northern American offices. This broad task covers mapping out the complete sales strategy, as well as overseeing the day-to-day sales activities. The existing structures of the newly acquired entities will serve as the basis for building an even more mature sales program. Zimmerman admits that he has already prioritized his tasks for the first few months at Summa Linguae Technologies:
SLT has already established successful sales operations in Europe and Asia. So for me, the number one focus is the implementation of similar structures in the American offices. I want the sales team to have a clear vision of what are the SLT’s priorities when it comes to sales and I’d like our operations to complement the global revenue architecture” – says the new CRO. When asked about his general sales strategy, he plans to use his proven experience to develop a well-structured revenue growth program centered on the needs of the customer and the market.
When it comes to Zimmerman’s professional experience, he’s a well-known figure in the LSP (language service providers) industry. He was the founder and CEO of Sajan, a language service provider acquired by Amplexor. During his term of office at Sajan, Zimmerman led to a successful IPO on NASDAQ and ranked among the world’s top 10 largest LSPs by revenue.
The biggest challenge for a sales person in the LSP markets – in his opinion – is a peculiar stagnancy in the industry. He recognizes that American buyers are used to the same, very limited services offered by the local industry players. He sees SLT’s offer as its biggest differentiator that will help win the most valuable accounts. Zimmerman feels strongly about Summa’s commitment to innovation and points to this aspect as the one that convinced him to come work for the company:
Language buyers want more than translation, they require a broader breadth of solutions. I can see a straightforward path to innovation in Summa Linguae’s growth strategy. Most recent acquisitions and the specializations of those acquired entities are examples of those exact solutions beyond translation that the market seeks. After speaking with Krzysztof Zdanowski and Jochen Hummel (SLT’s Board Member and the founder of Trados), it became clear to me that we share the same vision of the future. This company has that unique, entrepreneurial attitude which is very exciting for me – sums up the new CRO.
Zimmerman also applauds SLT’s understanding of data services, the use of AI and foresees that those aspects will single out the company on the American market. It’s also technology that – in his opinion – will determine the direction in which the whole industry is going:
For so long, companies have talked about technology, but the actual realization of the benefits derived from technology is of great interest and something that sophisticated buyers are seeking
Krzysztof Zdanowski, the CEO and founder of Summa Linguae Technologies says it was this broad experience and his acknowledgment of the need for innovation that determined the choice of Zimmerman for the position:
We were looking for someone with a proven track record, who at the same time, can introduce even more inventiveness into SLT’s sales operations. After the initial round of talks, we strongly felt that Shannon is going to be a great addition to the team and he is the perfect person to shape our offering in the American market.
Shannon Zimmerman will be reporting directly to the CEO (Krzysztof Zdanowski) and he will be in charge of the existing sales team. As Zimmerman’s ambitious strategy assumes intense growth, he already considers growing his team and announces recruitment plans. He himself was recruited with the help of the Irish recruitment agency – LionPeople.