“We forget just how niche and quirky our little sphere is,” said the new Business Development Director at an AI-enabled language service provider (LSP). She told Slator that, in her experience, it’s better to turn a project manager or linguist with solid communication skills into a salesperson rather than recruiting someone from outside the industry even if they are trained in sales.
Meanwhile, the new Chief Strategy Officer at a UK-based LSP pointed out how the industry is “struggling to grasp some of the opportunities in front of it — partly because its traditional ways of working are so entrenched, and partly because there has been a huge focus in recent years on consolidation as a primary driver of short-term value.”
Anna Gargiulo – Toppan Digital Language
On June 2, 2021, Anna Gargiulo stepped into her role as Chief Sales Officer of Toppan Digital Language. The LSP is the subsidiary of Singapore-based Toppan Leefung, with its ultimate parent being global printing giant, Japan-based Toppan Printing.
The LSP is headquartered in London, and Gargiulo works out of the company’s New York City office. She reports to the President, whose name was undisclosed at this writing.
Gargiulo oversees all revenue generation and sales targets at the LSP, including sales strategy and execution, customer acquisition strategy and retention, talent acquisition and retention, aside from serving as chief client advocate.
She described Toppan Digital Language as “an exciting new entrant with a strong focus on language solutions for regulated or high-risk content, in industries such as financial services, healthcare, and life sciences.”
Prior to joining the LSP, Gargiulo was VP of Sales for Regulated Industries at SDL. According to Gargiulo, the role of LSPs “continues to evolve for customers, going beyond simply localization and translation. The need for more and effective communication, reaching diverse customers across languages and cultures, and connecting consumers to all communication channels is not just a regulatory requirement [but also] good business practice.”
She added, “I personally look forward to Toppan Digital Language’s role in this effort and to be a leading employer that serves clients, communities, and employees with respect, transparency, and dignity.”
Alex Jarvis – Toppan Digital Language
On May 1, 2021, Alex Jarvis joined Toppan Digital Language as Chief Strategy Officer. She reports to the President, whose name will be disclosed at a later date. Her remit covers corporate strategy, mergers and acquisitions, finance, and partners.
Jarvis is based in London where the LSP has its headquarters. She told Slator, “We are leveraging the substantial international footprint of our parent Group and growing through a combination of organic investment and acquisitions.”
While technology forms a key part of the LSP’s strategy, Jarvis said their approach combines “best-of-breed, third-party technologies” with their own proprietary ones “in key value-added areas.”
Jarvis’ immediate past role was as Senior VP and a member of the Executive Team at SDL, where she was responsible for Corporate Development and Corporate Marketing.
“Prior to joining SDL, I had been a stockbroker and equity analyst for many years, focused on the software and services sector. Sometimes it is helpful to have someone from outside questioning why on earth things are done this way or that way,” Jarvis said.
She said the language services industry is “struggling to grasp some of the opportunities in front of it — partly because its traditional ways of working are so entrenched, and partly because there has been a huge focus in recent years on consolidation as a primary driver of short-term value, rather than fundamental transformation or stability and innovation for customers.”
According to Jarvis, “I won’t quite give away all my strategy but I know where we need to put our energy; and it starts and ends with customer focus.”
Mark Shriner – memoQ
On June 1, 2021, Mark Shriner took on the role of Strategic Sales Director at memoQ. He reports to Co-CEOs Peter Reynolds and Balázs Kis, as well as Judit Árvay, Head of Sales at the translation management system (TMS) provider.
Shriner is in charge of the development of key accounts in strategic verticals globally. He is also responsible for the creation and execution of a business plan that will result in increased market share in those verticals. He is based in Bellevue, Washington.
Headquartered in Budapest, Hungary, memoQ, as Shriner described it is “a highly sophisticated, compatible, and secure TMS that provides linguistic workflow automation, linguistic quality assurance and automation, and allows for a wide range of integrations with external systems.”
Prior to working at memoQ, Shriner served as Director of Client Engagement for North America & Japan at adaQuest, a Microsoft Partner for cybersecurity and compliance.
He told Slator, “I feel very fortunate that the leadership team at memoQ worked with me to create a new role that strongly aligns my experience and core competencies with the company’s strategic objectives of expanding our market share into key verticals, including life sciences and financial services.”
Christian Wulf – Lexsys
Christian Wulf joined Germany-based LSP, Lexsys Language Consultants, on March 1, 2021, the day following his departure from RWS. As Senior Director of Customer Relations at Lexsys, he reports to Simon Fry and Stephen Healy, the founders and CEOs of the company.
Wulf manages the LSP’s client contacts, his major focus being to establish new (B2B) customer relations while taking care of existing clients. He works in close collaboration with the project management team and is also responsible for marketing and social media campaigns.
Company headquarters are in Stuttgart, Southern Germany, but Wulf works out of his home in Bingen am Rhein, which is close to Frankfurt.
According to Wulf, Lexsys is a well-established LSP, being in the business for more than 25 years. Their passion, he said, is “communication — from copywriting and technical writing to transcreation and translation.” He added, “We are ISO-certified and are part of the SAP-partner network, where we offer language consultancy, translation, and information design.”
Just before Wulf left RWS (Moravia), he served as Business Development Manager for EMEA, where he focused on serving clients from the legal sector.
Recalling how he transitioned to language services and the past couple of years, Wulf said: “After working for 15 years in the media industry, I decided to work for MultiLing, an LSP based in Provo, Utah. Unfortunately, the company was sold. That’s why I made the transition to Alpha Translations (Canada) — which was then acquired by RWS Moravia. The founders of Lexsys promised me to not sell the company. So I am looking forward to working for the Lexsys family for many years, although the industry is still affected by many M&As.”
Alyssa Yorgan – Pangeanic
On May 3, 2021, Alyssa Yorgan joined AI-enabled LSP, Pangeanic as Director of Business Development for North and South America. She reports to Virginia Virino, Global Sales Director.
Her main responsibilities have to do with building out Pangeanic and PangeaMT’s presence in the US primarily. Pangeanic is based in Valencia, Spain, while Yorgan works out of Miami Beach, Florida.
Yorgan told Slator, “The company has focused on the European and Japanese markets over the past 20 years, including several high-profile projects involving MT engine customization and multilingual data services for EU organizations. My job is to focus on developing partnerships with enterprises, public sector organizations, and other LSPs that stand to gain major value from integrating our services into their content workflows.”
She said Pangeanic, particularly subsidiary PangeaMT, is focused on developing deep, adaptive MT engines and offering multilingual AI data services, which range from anonymization to summarization, chatbot creation, sentiment analysis, and more.
“The sheer amount of data that Pangeanic has collected, cleaned, and aligned — at this point, over 11 billion segments — is in itself a testament to the company’s focus on the AI-driven next wave of transformation in the localization industry,” Yorgan added.
Prior to Pangeanic, Yorgan worked as Business Development Director at Nimdzi Insights, “selling custom market research and consulting projects.”
Her take on the current salesperson talent pool: “I am a huge advocate for hiring salespeople with boots-on-the-ground experience in language services. In my experience, it’s more effective to turn a project manager or linguist with solid communication skills into a salesperson than to recruit someone trained in sales from outside the industry.”
Yorgan further noted, “We forget just how niche and quirky our little sphere is, and it can be daunting for a salesperson who may not even speak another language, let alone grasp the sheer range of language technologies, to ramp up to a level where they can really understand a client’s challenges.”