Crown, appointment Image by talpeanu from PixabayAfter a few months of searching, Rootstock has finally appointed its next permanent CEO. The ERP vendor has appointed Richard (Rick) Berger as its new Chief Executive Officer. Berger will replace Interim CEO Jeff Ralyea. Who now steps back to become Executive Chairman of the firm and will continue in an advisory role.

Berger joined the firm after its Rooted-In conference, where it announced its latest innovations. One of them is AIRS, an Artificial Intelligence solution that leverages data from the signal chain to produce predictive insights. The company also unveiled its vision for manufacturing, supported by Salesforce.

While Berger immediately succeeds Ralyea, he steps into the role vacated by David Stephans, who left the company in November 2023. Stephans has yet to find a new role. Berger will need to ensure that Rootstock expands in line with Gryphon Investors ambitions for the company. Gryphon bought Rootstock two years ago.

Ralyea commented, “Rick’s appointment comes at a critical juncture in Rootstock’s trajectory; demand for Rootstock ERP, built on the Salesforce Platform, is accelerating as manufacturers move from siloed operations to a more connected Signal Chain strategy.

“Rick has a proven track record of scaling tech companies for growth. Add to this his understanding of the enterprise software market and experience across the Salesforce ecosystem, and it’s a combination sure to drive success for Rootstock and to enable the Rootstock team to deliver new levels of value to our customers and partners.”  

Who is Rick Berger

Rick Berger, CEO of Rootstock (image credit - LinkedIn/Rick Berger)
Rick Berger, CEO of Rootstock

Berger joins from NewStore Inc., the omnichannel store solution for enterprise retailers. He joined the company in 2019 from Infor as Chief Commercial Officer and rose to the role of President. Berger helped NewStore develop its relationship with Salesforce. With Rootstock on the platform, the relationships he builds with Salesforce will be important in his new role.

At Infor he was Global Vice President of Sales and was a founding member of the Retail Business Unit. However, he was responsible for Infor products across its portfolio, including discrete manufacturing in the Americas. He also spent eleven years at Oracle as Vice President of Sales for Retail Solutions. He worked with Fortune 500 retail organisations.

Berger, commented, “After years of navigating volatility, inflation, and pressures on profitability, manufacturers stand on the precipice of momentous change. Through innovative solutions like Rootstock Manufacturing ERP and AIRS, we’re catalyzing a much-needed shift. Equipping manufacturers with the right infrastructure and cutting-edge technologies — including predictive analytics, generative AI, and IoT — we’re helping them to overcome past challenges and seize new opportunities for growth and digital advancement.

“Joining Rootstock at this pivotal point is exciting, as our offering has the potential to shape the future of the industry. I’m eager to contribute to Rootstock’s global expansion and strengthen our commitment to helping manufacturers succeed.” 

Enterprise Times: What does this mean

In Berger, Gryphon and Rootstock have found someone with deep experience in working and selling to Enterprise Customers. While most of his career has been spent working in retail, the experience at Infor will have enabled him to better understand the manufacturing landscape. Working with organisations that will fit within the Rootstock target market.

Rootstock has hopefully found a CEO who can help drive the company forward. Fulfilling its growth ambitions, cementing the relationship with Salesforce and expanding nternationally. It will be interesting to see how Berger adapts and leads Rootstock through 2024 and beyond.


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