Microsoft New Zealand has appointed former NZ trade commissioner for Singapore Hayley Horan as its software-as-a-service (SaaS) partner lead.
Horan joins Microsoft from data analytics company Data Insight, where she was the chief growth officer, after six years working with New Zealand Trade and Enterprise.
Horan will be responsible for overseeing the SaaS partner channel, working alongside partners to connect them with capital and specialist expertise, and helping to build a technology skills pipeline for the industry.
A major focus is also creating connections around the world via Microsoft’s global networks, supporting local SaaS businesses to launch and grow their presence in overseas markets.
Horan took part in the development of the government’s Industry Transformation Plan (ITP) for the digital sector, co-writing the SaaS strategy and serving as the NZTE tech sector lead on the digital workstream.
With Callaghan Innovation, she was instrumental in establishing the KiwiSaaS business community and SaaS advisory board. She also sat on the Governance group of the newly-launched New Zealand tech and innovation story.
“I’ve seen from the outside the value that Microsoft adds for its partners in the SaaS sector, and I’m incredibly excited to be joining the team that makes it all happen,” Horan said.
“SaaS is a huge area of opportunity for New Zealand’s tech sector, as seen through the global success of companies like Cin7, FlexiTime and LawVu.
"With the arrival of Microsoft’s New Zealand datacentre region soon, it will be a catalyst to unlock even more opportunities for our partners and springboard them to success in international markets, and I feel privileged to be helping achieve that.”
Vanessa Sorenson, Microsoft New Zealand managing director, said Horan shared Microsoft's passion to empower people and organisations globally and broughtdeep expertise in helping startups become global successes.
"We can’t wait to see what she can do for the SaaS sector here," she said.
Horan also serves as the chair of natural healthcare company The Herb Farm, and was a board observer for international trade development at NZTech.