Leaseweb is excited to announce Pieter Kraan as the new Managing Director of Singapore and Australia as of September 2022!
Pieter is the perfect fit for this dynamic role with over 20 years of global experience in growing businesses, including 10 years in Asia. He joined the Leaseweb family in 2021 as Managing Director of Japan and Hong Kong and has already led considerable successes. Pieter takes over management of the Singapore and Australia teams from Julia Gortinskaya, who is returning to Amsterdam to become Sales Director of Leaseweb Netherlands.
Think Globally, Act Locally
Pieter is no stranger to international environments. He pursued an MBA in General Management from a joint program in the Netherlands, the USA, and South Africa – with courses focused on marketing strategy and doing business in cross-cultural business environments. His first job out of university was for a Dutch company which was acquired by a Japanese one. The cultural differences were initially challenging, and “sometimes the different perspectives were hard to understand,” Pieter explains, “it triggered my interest to move abroad and gain new experiences.”
At the time of the integration of the two companies, the opportunity arose for Pieter to move to Beijing with his family, where he worked for four years. “During my time in China,” Pieter says, “I learned that every province has a different approach to doing business. In addition, I learned to work in cross-cultural teams and how to grow a company through challenges like language barriers. Developing my team as well as learning from them in that context was an enriching experience.”
Six years ago, he moved to Singapore to become a regional head. In that time, he traveled a lot throughout the region to support his local teams, meeting customers and management of business partners. “Understanding the business culture in the region and understanding the local market is very important. I always say we must act global, but think local to be successful, and that is especially true in this region.”
Expanding Leaseweb in Asia and Australia
When Pieter first joined Leaseweb, the Japanese base was just starting up. “I was brought in to help facilitate the opening of Japan and bring further growth to the Hong Kong region. It’s interesting building a business from the ground up and the growth has been beyond expectations. We are very excited that we will be opening a second data center in Tokyo at the end of this year to facilitate our growth.”
A new data center is also being added in Singapore and is expected to be ready next month. Additionally, Leaseweb will be opening another data center location in Sydney early next year, meaning that a total of nine data centers will be up and running in the region by February 2023.
Naturally, Pieter is itching to tap into more opportunities, building on what his predecessor established. “Leaseweb has shown steady growth in Singapore and Australia, and my focus will be to continue that pattern by strengthening our team and investing in the development of each individual. The challenge of any fast-growing organization is to attract talented people in a timely manner, which is why we must invest in team support. Creating an inspiring environment where people can learn is the key to success.”
“It’s our top priority that we are able to facilitate growth for our customers,” Pieter continues, “As a business partner, we keep in close communication with them so we can anticipate their needs, strengthening our long-standing relationships with our customers from across the globe. The three new data centers will accommodate for that, as well as create space for the incredible opportunities that we see in the region.”
Pieter’s Experience at Leaseweb
“Leaseweb’s strength is its cross-cultural teams, made up of talented and ambitious people,” Pieter says. He enjoys the bubbly entrepreneurial mindset and open attitude of the company at large. “Having the opportunity to visit our data center teams in several locations, I noticed the passion and eagerness to learn within these teams. It gave me a good kickstart in understanding the dynamics of the Leaseweb organization.”
Leaseweb caters to the needs of organizations across a wide range of major industries including Martech, Adtech, Fintech, iGaming, Big Tech, Cyber Security and SaaS. The new data center openings will support the strategic needs of customers who are expanding in the region and will enable the growth of Leaseweb’s business locally.
Pieter’s Ambitions for the Future
Asking about Pieter’s future ambitions for Leaseweb, he stated: “Firstly, to become the market-leading cloud and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider in this region. Supporting this secondly by building strong cross-cultural teams that can cater to our customer needs, enabling strong customer satisfaction. Thirdly, investing in the development of strong and strategic partnerships that will support our ambitious goals. Finally, seeking new business opportunities to strengthen our regional presence,” Pieter says.
“I am looking forward to adding my experience to the mix, expanding the success of Leaseweb in the region. Implementing our growth strategy that suits our global and local customers and bringing the company to the next level in its ambitions in this fast growing and strategically important region. It’s great to be part of and lead this dynamic organization in Singapore, Australia, Japan and Hong Kong,” he concludes with a smile.
Read the press release here.