The following announcement is based on an internal note to American Express employees from Steve Squeri, Chairman and CEO Designate:
I am writing to let you know that, after a long and distinguished career at American Express, Susan Sobbott, President, Global Commercial Services, has advised me of her plans to leave the company.
During discussions about our upcoming plans for the organization, Susan shared that she wants the opportunity to run a company as its chief executive. Given this, she concluded that now is an appropriate time for her to explore opportunities outside of American Express. While I am disappointed that Susan will no longer be a part of our senior leadership team, I am confident that she will have great success in her next endeavor.
Susan will continue to lead the Global Commercial Services business over the coming months as I conduct an external search for her successor. Her last day will be February 1, 2018.
Susan's contributions to our company over the past 27 years have been substantial and enduring. For much of her career, she has held senior leadership roles in our commercial businesses, starting first with OPEN and more recently with our combined Global Commercial Services businesses. Prior to that, she served in senior roles in both our Merchant Services and Consumer Card businesses. In each role, she has made a significant positive impact on our customers, our brand, and our results.
In her time with Merchant Services, Susan was an early pioneer in our efforts to make American Express card acceptance ubiquitous. A consistent innovator, she has led dozens of successful product launches and strategic partnerships throughout her tenure that helped greatly expand our customer base and drive growth for the company. With her customer-centric approach to leadership, Susan has been a driving force in making American Express known as a thought leader and advocate for entrepreneurs.
During the financial crisis of 2008, Susan worked tirelessly to assist our small business customers return to growth. Perhaps no greater example of that is Small Business Saturday, which was launched under her leadership to drive consumer traffic to local independent businesses emerging from the recession. SBS, lauded by Fast Company as the “most successful marketing campaign of the decade,” is now a beloved movement in the U.S. and a number of international markets.
As President of Global Commercial Services, Susan led the integration of five different commercial businesses, eliminating redundancies, reducing costs, unifying teams, streamlining our go-to-market strategies, and leveraging the assets of each business for the success of all. Her focus on improving the customer experience for our large and global accounts, launching several new and refreshed products, deepening relationships with our largest and most profitable small and mid-size customers, and building strategic relationships to develop payments automation solutions and growth in non-card lending has helped to solidify our leadership position and make our commercial businesses among the fastest growing in the company.
Susan is a compassionate and inspired leader who has consistently demonstrated the ability to develop top talent, build high performing teams and promote an entrepreneurial work environment. As the long-time chair of the Women's Interest Network and the founding sponsor of Parents at Amex, Susan has long been a champion of accelerating the advancement of women leaders at all levels within American Express.
Susan exemplifies the values of American Express. We have all benefitted tremendously from her many contributions. Please join me in wishing Susan continued success in her next chapter and thanking her for her leadership and commitment to our company, our people and our customers.
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