Global e-commerce solutions provider Digital River announced the appointment of Christopher ("C.J.") Bernander as CFO.
Bernander comes to Minneapolis-based Digital River from SaaS-based education tech company Renaissance Learning, where he was vice president of finance. Before that, Bernander was at Digital River in financial leadership roles, including accounting, finance and corporate development functions.
"I’m proud to be returning to Digital River during such an exciting time for the company," Bernander said in a statement. "I look forward to working with the entire team as we execute on growing our customers’ online revenues while protecting them from business risk."
Bernander said he gained a first-hand look at how the e-commerce industry has evolved in his previous roles and among the things he wants to focus on now is business intelligence.
"At [Renaissance Learning], I led both the financial planning and business intelligence functions," he told CFO Dive in an email. "Aligning [them] together can be a very powerful source of organizational insights and knowledge, specifically for a company with large amounts of transactional data to leverage."
Earlier in his career, he split time between accounting and treasury roles. "I’m looking forward to leading the finance organization across all functions,” he said. “and leaning into operations, specifically driving growth, change and strategy."
In recent years, it's become increasingly common for CFOs to take on additional operational duties, but this will not be the case for Bernander.
"The CFO position at Digital River is not a de facto COO," he said. "However, it does blend financial and operational responsibilities."
Unlike what Bernander calls a "more traditional" CFO role, operational functions will be reporting directly to him. "Having the unique advantage of being able to see across all business functions," he said, "[I will] play a very active role in managing operational execution across the entire business."