Okta announces first Chief Digital Officer

Identity provider Okta has announced that John Zissimos, formerly of Google and Salesforce, is to be their first Chief Digital Officer.

In the newly created role, Zissimos will report to Kendall Collins, Chief Marketing Officer, and will be responsible for the holistic creative, campaign, digital, and brand strategy for the company.

“Okta is a remarkable company and I was immediately drawn to the people, purpose, and product,” said Zissimos. “I’m a storyteller and teambuilder at heart and am humbled to play a role in telling the Okta story and leading the creative brand strategy in the next phase of the company’s journey. I’ve long admired the company’s culture, values, and effective method of empowering people and teams. In doing so, Okta has become the most trusted platform to secure every identity and I look forward to building on its strong brand foundation to create work that inspires and drives value for customers and workforces worldwide.”

Zissimos’ most recent position was as Vice President of Creative, Brand, Media, and Customer Programs at Google, where he led the team responsible for marketing the Google Cloud Platform globally. Other notable experience includes Chief Design Officer for Salesforce, and two decades as an award-winning advertising and design executive, film director, and photographer.

Since going public in 2017, Okta’s growth has slowed somewhat over the past few years, though the pandemic-driven need for more effective and friction-free identity management means it still saw a healthy 43% revenue growth in FY 2021.

Earlier this year, it announced new offerings in the areas of privileged access management and identity governance and administration, as well as a £6.5 billion acquisition of digital identity platform Auth0, which will continue to operate as an independent business unit within Okta.

With Okta clearly aiming to firmly consolidate its position as a leader in the identity space, and ramp up its revenue growth, the new Chief Digital Officer role is likely to play a key role in determining strategy.

“Okta has the incredible potential to become an iconic brand, and we are so excited to have John lead this effort and creatively influence our next phase of growth,” said Collins. “The Okta Identity Cloud touches tens of millions of knowledge workers and customers every day and John has the ideal skill set to evolve Okta’s brand strategy and deliver the delightful digital experiences that our users have come to expect. Okta will benefit tremendously from John’s pedigree in building the most recognizable software brands in the world. His brand vision, award-winning creative expertise, and empathetic approach to leadership and culture are unmatched. We are thrilled to welcome him to the team.”

Researcher, writer, recovering medievalist. Currently particularly interested in the cybersecurity solutions market, cyber insurance/risk modelling, and IoT security.

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