by George Nott

Google Australia chief makes move to Domain CEO role

Jul 03, 2018
Cloud ComputingDigital TransformationGovernment

Google Australia and New Zealand managing director Jason Pellegrino has been appointed CEO of Domain.

Pellegrino has been with Google since 2008, joining as head of strategy and sales, working his way up the ranks to become MD of the ANZ region in 2016. He sits on the search giant’s Asia-Pacific leadership team.

“I have spent close to a decade with Google and enjoyed every single day. I consider myself enormously lucky to have been part of this rapid shift in technology and our journey from desktop to smartphone and now the AI powered world ahead. But what I will miss the most as I take on this new exciting role are all the fantastic colleagues, partners and customers I have had the privilege to work with over the years,” Pellegrino said in a statement to CIO Australia.

“Throughout this time, I have always prided myself on supporting the growth of incredibly strong teams and establishing transparent and trusting relationship with partners and customers, something I am looking forward to continuing as I join Domain,” he added.

Pellegrino – who has previously worked for PepsiCo, KPMG and LEK Consulting – will start the role at the end of August on a $1.2 million salary. In December he will receive a $500,000 cash bonus.

If he hits financial and personal performance metrics set by the board he is in line for a $960,000 bonus.

The appointment follows the shock departure of then Domain CEO Antony Catalona in January. Catalona tendered his resignation after realising “the demands of his role and his absence from the lives of his family were proving more challenging than he had expected” the company said at the time.

The announcement followed reports in the Australian Financial Review that Catalano oversaw a “boys’ club” culture where cocaine use among staff was an “accepted rumour”.

The role has been filled on an interim basis by Domain board chairman Nick Falloon.

“We are delighted to have Jason join Domain as CEO. Jason’s career as a digital executive with deep experience in sales, strategy, operations and product and technology speaks for itself. His leadership acumen and track record for inspiring and driving performance at Google will greatly assist him to take Domain, and its many talented people, into an exciting next stage of growth,” Falloon said in a statement this morning.

Google did not comment by the time of publication on Pellegrino’s replacement and whether the role would be filled by an internal promotion or external search.

“I want to thank Jason for his tremendous contribution to Google over the past decade. Jason has not only been a great leader for our operations in Australia and New Zealand, he has also been a strong champion of the digital agenda and opportunity for the region. I have learned a lot from him and I am sad to lose him from our leadership team. I and the wider Google team will indeed miss him, both as a great colleague and leader,” said Google president of Asia Pacific, Karim Temsamani.

Domain was spun out of Fairfax Media in November and listed with a market capitalisation of $2.2 billion.

The real estate classifieds and services business – which owns the Domain, Allhomes, Review Property and Commercial Real Estate brands – posted a positive first set of results in February, but faces a cooling Australian housing market and a dropping off in house and apartment listings.