My "work" is based around emerging software companies. I have been lucky in that work has always been fun - mostly because of the great people I have had the chance to work with.
After Bluestone I started consulting with companies. I settled into a pattern where I will work with a couple of companies at a time and be an investor, board member and close advisor. I really like to know the people and the market and the technology and feel like I am a part of the company. This has worked out well in terms of having fun, making a decent contribution, and making money.
Bluestone got acquired by HP for $450M in 2000. I was "Bluestone Bob" - coming up with the idea for what evolved into application servers, hiring most of the management team, driving the product side of the business and being the primary spokesperson for the company in the technology community and with key customers and partners. I became the General Manager for the HP Middleware Division (Bluestone plus some other groups that had been part of HP) once we were acquired - a business unit of 700 technology, sales, marketing and finance professionals. HP shut the division down a couple of years later. Difficult and the biggest loss in my life.
JBoss got acquired by Red Hat for $350M in 2006. I joined as a nearly full time advisor and helped with developing the business strategy, getting Matrix and Accel to invest in the company, hiring a number of key executives and leading 5 acquisitions. We grew the company from 6 to over 200 when I was there from 2002 to 2006. JBoss has become the fastest growing part of Red Hat and it is regarded as a very successful acquisition, and there are still a lot of people still at Red Hat 15 years later.
Bristol Technology was acquired by HP in 2007. I was on the board and helped with product strategy and some hiring. While the investors did not make a lot of money, the business has done very well inside HP and is considered quite a success.
Princeton Softech was acquired by IBM in 2007 for $290M. I was an advisor for the company, and did not do too much, but did help in recruiting Shaun Connolly and Al Smith to the company - who were critical to turning this company around. Al went on the run this division at IBM for 3 very successful years.
I also helped out Jaspersoft a bit thru a couple of generations of management teams. They were acquired by TIBCO for $185M in 2014 and are still a strong business inside TIBCO.
Hyperic was acquired by Spring, which was in turn acquired by VMWare for $420M. Hyperic brought real value to Spring and caused revenues to accelerate rapidly, and the Spring division has grown many times since the acquisition in 2009. One of the joys of being on this board was getting to work with Javier Soltero, who is now heading up Google's Workspace.
I was also on the Board of Metaverse from around 2004 until 2017, where I get to work with Rich Sbarro and Tom Novellino. Rich has since joined RunSignup | GiveSignup as a Principle Developer (he's amazing, and so is Tom). Metaverse runs several e-commerce art websites like FramedArt.com. I learned a lot about web marketing.
I was also on the eXo board and an advisor from 2009-2016. That was a fun gig since they were founded in France, and I would get to go to Paris several times a year, and even got to visit their office in Tunisia. They are still operating as a successful independent company. They did spin off a technology called CodeEnvy, which was acquired by Red Hat.
In 2012 I sold my half of the Moorestown Running Company to my partner, Dave Welsh.
So 7 of the 8 technology businesses, and the running store business continue today, and that makes me happy.
RunSignup | GiveSignup - I spend most of my time as the CEO and Founder. In 2019 we had over 21,000 races and 8,000 nonprofits in the US using our platform to sign up over 6 Million participants and raise over $270 Million. We launched GiveSignup as a new area of focus in 2019, and continue building out the technology and cross sell our thousands of nonprofit customers from using us just for their 5K to use us for their galas, golf outings and pancake breakfasts and well as general donations and fundraising. Even though 2020 was very difficult for live events, our focus on nonprofits helped us thru a difficult year. We took a small Series A in September, 2020 to help position us to scale as live events come back. We expect to take a larger round of funding in the future to grow the GiveSignup business.
CloudBees - I am an advisor and on the board. My friend Sacha Labourey (from JBoss) founded this company in 2010. I helped introduce the concept of focusing on Continuous Delivery and helped the company pivot to Jenkins. The company is a leading DevOps company today with over $100M of ARR and about 500 employees. It is backed by top tier investors - David Skok of Matrix, John Vrionis of Unusual Ventures, Lightspeed Venture partners, Delta-V and Verizon.
RedLine13 - We spun this company out of RunSignup in 2013. It was load testing technology we had developed to help us test the scaling of our environment so we could emulate handling 50,000 registrations in 7 minutes. We also developed innovative zipcode API to do a variety of functions based on location (we use it to autofill city-state information based on a 5 digit zipcode to save users typing). We offer both at very low prices in a self serve environment. There are now thousands of users and we operate it as a cash flow based business with one of our old friends running day to day operations.