Former SAP Star Christal Bemont Shines As Talend’s New CEO

In its bid to reach a billion dollars in revenue, data integrator Talend is bringing in a seasoned veteran for scaling business to help it reach that benchmark. Christal Bemont is coming onboard as CEO after the cloud provider’s search for a new senior leader led them to the former CRO of SAP Concur.

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Interestingly, Talend wasn’t looking for a new CEO when they came upon Bemont. Nonetheless, the data firm bumped up its offer after realizing what it had found in the Concur exec. “When we started the CRO search, we were looking for someone who could have the trajectory to become a CEO,” said Mike Tuchen, Talend’s former CEO. “When we found Christal, we realized we didn’t have to wait.”

Tuchen joined the Talend team in 2013 and led the company through a 2016 IPO that was well-received at a time tech companies were apprehensive about going public. He is leaving the firm as it completes its 4-year transition to cloud-based services. The company reports its cloud revenue accounts for almost 50 percent of its revenue, and growth has more than doubled every quarter over the last 13 financial quarters.

Launched initially as a provider of onsite integration software, Talend adopted a cloud-first strategy in 2016 and started down the rocky road of its digital transformation. Stocks plummeted almost 35 percent in one day after a weak forecast in 2018 caused investors to balk. Since then, shares have recovered 20 percent but still fall short of the almost $70 high it reached that same year. A Wall Street tech savant, Tuchen is known for his cautious approach to achievable growth while operating with positive cash flow. He decided to move on after the digital data platform on-boarded Bemont from SAP Concur.

The new chief executive comes to the cloud data management company at a pivotal time. As it embraces a more aggressive growth strategy and pushes to meet its ten-digit revenue goal, Talend will need a leader focused on high growth. “We were trying to find a leader who can strongly go to market with a focused cloud business at scale,” Tuchen said.

Bemont was intrigued by Talend’s offer after realizing that applications are “only as good as the data you put in. When I thought about where I’d spend the next stage of my career, I knew it was going to be all about the data.”

Bemont comes as part of a package deal, however. She brings two former Concur executives to augment Talend’s leadership team – VP of enterprise sales, Ann-Christel Graham, and VP of global services operations, Jamie Kiser. Graham will step into the CRO role, and Kiser will assume the responsibilities of the chief customer officer.

During her 15-year tenure with Concur, Bemont occupied several sales and marketing leadership roles as she rose through the ranks. While serving as chief revenue officer, she oversaw the company’s sales and marketing strategies spanning more than 90 countries. At that time, her portfolio experience 25 percent in annual revenue growth. Before Concur, Bemont worked in various sales and operational positions with Motorola, Adexs, Extensity, and Clarify.