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Xero’s FY21 through the eyes of our customers and people

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Rachael Powell

May 12, 2021

We’ve just reported a strong financial and operating result today in our full year earnings announcement to 31 March 2021 (FY21). The result demonstrates Xero is well positioned to meet fast-evolving customer needs in an environment where cloud-based software and integrated digital tools are becoming more and more important.

Our small business customers have relied on cloud tools such as Xero to help them navigate what was an incredibly challenging year for businesses the world over. But while challenging, there have also been stories of resilience, of hope, and of success. 

Our community reflects on FY21

This year, the theme of our annual report is ‘through their eyes’. We know that Xero would not be the company it is today without our customers – small businesses or accounting and bookkeeping partners – and our more than 3,600 Xero employees across the globe. So with this in mind, for the first time in our report, we’ve included perspectives from our customers, partners and employees, who are incredibly important to our business and also the communities they operate in. 

We’ve spoken to US based small business owner Michael Alexis, owner of Museum Hack. When COVID-19 changed events for the foreseeable future, Museum Hack’s successful renegade museum tours in major US cities went on hold. A new, virtual business – TeamBuilding – was born, and the new business is thriving.

Also thriving is Kristen’s Kick-Ass Ice Cream in South Africa and Mauritius. Owner Kristen Buttress says handing the business reins over to her trusted accountant, along with using a suite of apps from Xero’s App Marketplace, has completely transformed the business. She even went on to open her fourth store last year, in the thick of the pandemic.

The 2021 financial year was also transformative for many of our accounting and bookkeeping partners. In Canada, the team at MNP’s cloud service line, ease, used Xero’s new short-term cash flow tool, which we introduced in June 2020. They used the tool to help their clients manage their cash flow throughout COVID-19, and help them to prepare for business recovery. While in the UK, the de Jong Phillips team’s tech-savvy approach to business played a key role in the survival, and even growth, of their clients’ businesses.

FY21 was an extraordinary year for our people, all of whom were impacted by COVID-19 with many having to rapidly adapt to new ways of working. We’ve shared some stories through the eyes of several of our employees, all of whom have had different experiences during their time at Xero. Tessa Khoo has been enjoying her time as a new parent; Theo Redmond has appreciated Xero’s focus on mental wellbeing; Dahalia Jenkins and her colleagues formed Black Xero, a virtual space where they can discuss their experiences living in the US; while Rae Biffin embraced Xero’s commitment to having a positive effect on our communities, including our Net Zero @ Xero initiative.

Building on success to look at the year ahead

These people are a very small subsection of our diverse customers, partners and employees around the globe. I’ve found it really heartening to learn about what Xero means to them. It makes me so proud that we’ve been able to share these stories through their eyes in this year’s annual report. It also gives me hope and happiness that as we move through the pandemic, we can share many more stories of small business resilience, of taking on new challenges, and of success.

At Xero, we know we have a responsibility to our wider community, and as we enter FY22, we’re as committed as ever to our purpose – to make life better for people in small business, their advisors and communities around the world.

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