Over the last 12 years, I’ve enjoyed an extraordinary track record of professional success and career fulfillment, going four for four in successful high-tech companies. I attribute this to a knack for finding a strong value proposition in small high-tech companies before anyone really knows about them, and taking a key role to bring a product to market.
- In the Bay Area, I joined Inktomi in 1999 as a sales engineer and became the Director or Product Management by 2000. Inktomi became well known for its search engine and network caching software. Inktomi enjoyed a successful IPO and peaked at a $25 Billion market cap during the dot com days, after 14 consecutive quarters of 30% q/q growth.
- As Inktomi was being acquired by Yahoo in 2002, a friend recommended I look at a stealth mode security startup called Decru. I did, and was hired to run product marketing and launch the DataFort storage security appliance to the market. Decru was acquired in 2004 by NetApp for $272M.
- My wife and I wanted to move back to Austin, so in 2003 I came across a small 60 person security company called TippingPoint. TippingPoint builds a best-of-breed hardware appliance called an Intrusion Prevention System (IPS). I built the 2004 marketing plan, ran product management and product marketing, and hired a team of three people. In the first two years that I was there, we went from six customers to over 2,500, and revenue went from $300K/quarter to $20M/quarter. TippingPoint was acquired by 3Com in 2005. Since then, 3Com was acquired by HP in 2010.
- In late 2006, a small company called SolarWinds moved to Austin from Tulsa, OK. I took a role running world-wide product marketing and technical marketing and ended up hiring a team of four. I was also asked to create and launch the community site, Thwack, which became an integral part of the company’s Go-to-Market strategy. SolarWinds IPOed in early 2009 and now enjoys a market cap of over $1 Billion.
- In 2009, I started my own company called Yigdigs. Yigdigs is a For Sale By Owner website for helping home owners sell their home themselves without paying thousands of dollars in real estate commissions. I got the idea for Yigdigs from my experience as a real estate investor. After buying and selling several rental properties over the years, it became apparent to me that the process isn’t rocket science and should be easier for individuals to do themselves. Yigdigs provides educational videos, home pricing resources, and access to local real estate agents that will list a home in the MLS for a flat fee, rather than a commission.
My wife Colleen and I live in Austin with our wonderful children. Colleen now delights in being a full time mom after spending seven years as a successful general partner at a Bay Area venture capital firm.
I strongly believe in paying it forward with other entrepreneurs and tech professionals. Austin is the perfect town for that. If I can ever help, please feel free to give me a shout at asalo at yahoo dot com.
Or email me at asalo [at] yahoo dot com