Frazer Scott has announced his intention to leave Microsoft, after more than 15 years with the tech giant.
Reseller News can reveal that the industry figure will exit the business on Friday 1 December, with plans to take his transformation experience into future executive roles.
“I joined Microsoft 15 years ago to launch the initial Xbox, and things just rolled from there,” Scott told Reseller News.
“I’ve been blessed to be part of some amazing teams across Australia and New Zealand, both in consumer, and over the past seven years in the commercial space.”
Since starting out as a sales leader covering Xbox and consumer products, Scott was appointed COO of the entertainment and devices division across Australia and New Zealand in 2006.
After four years in the role, Scott assumed the combined responsibility of chief marketing and operations officer in New Zealand, a position he has held since October 2010.
“After seven years in this role, I felt like I have done seven different jobs,” Scott added. “Over that time Microsoft has transformed from a software company, to a cloud services company and we’ve changed everything in that time.
“From products, business models, channels to sales methodology, even the logo has changed, and I’m lucky enough to have been involved at some way in all aspects of those changes. Ok, maybe not the logo, but it’s been an amazing role where I have learnt so much.
“However, after this length of time in role, I’m neither being challenged nor growing like I have in the past – so it’s time for a new journey.”
During the past 4-5 years, Scott said the Microsoft brand has become “much more relevant” to business and consumers than previously, through new product portfolios such as Surface, Hololens, Azure, Xbox, Office and Windows.
“They are all growing as thought-leading products, and this may sound esoteric, but I believe it has also become much more empathetic, and inclusive brand,” Scott added.
In looking back on more than 17 years of experience, Scott recalled two standout memories from his time at Microsoft, including winning New Zealand winning Subsidiary of the Year back-to-back for the past two years, as part of internal recognition with the wider organisation.
“Seeing what it meant to the team that had worked so hard to achieve it was incredibly rewarding,” Scott added.
“And secondly, seeing the impact our people and our technology can make on New Zealand has been equally rewarding.
“Impacting start-up companies to take on the world, impacting families and educators as technology helps meet the needs of each child’s differentiated learning, and through our philanthropic efforts with monetary donations, technology or volunteering - helping those organisations that serve those most in need.”
In looking ahead, and following a summer break, Scott is looking to return to the industry in an executive capacity.
“I will initially look to move into a new organisation or possibly consult for a period of time,” he said. “I love the dynamism of technology so would love to stay connected here, but specifically agri-tech and tourism I think are critical to New Zealand’s future.
“Also, telco, energy, finance and banking are also interesting as they are at a critical time of disruption, deregulation and disintermediation – that’s a powerful mix. I’m passionate about bringing people and purpose together – be that in a CEO or COO role.”
As a result of the change, Donna Wright has been appointed as director of marketing and operations at Microsoft, effective from September 2017.
“Donna will bring her deep experiences as a CIO and also leading our enterprise services division to the marketing and operations team,” Scott added.
“We have also recently restructure our marketing team with deeper capability being centralised in Singapore that will require Donna’s great local leadership to fully enable.”
Prior to joining Microsoft in October 2010, Wright was previously generally manager of information systems and strategic projects at Coca-Cola Amatil, having previously ran corporate solutions for Air New Zealand for 15 years.
“It’s a privilege to be leading the Marketing and Operations organisation for Microsoft New Zealand,” Wright told Reseller News.
“Just as we support our customers and partners through digital transformation, here at Microsoft we are also going through our own transformation - from new modern marketing approaches through to how we improve our customer and partner engagement to enable their success.
“It’s a really exciting time to be at Microsoft, as we relentlessly focus on our mission to ‘empower every person and organisation on the planet to achieve more’.”