Links 6/30: Oracle loses HP Itanium suit; Bentley and Shell Announce Global Framework Agreement

Links 6/29: LeadiD, now Jornaya, raises $10 milion Series B led Edison Partners; Gartner on Qlik's products & prospects under private ownership

Links 6/28: Meetme to buy Skout; Katzenberg Sued Over "Side Deal" to DreamWorks-Comcast Merger

Links 6/27: Comcast Sues Over Exec Heading to Sprint; U.S. Supreme Court will not review Versata patent cancellation in SAP dispute

Sunday Highlights: Thomson Reuters’ intellectual property and science businesses taking bids; A new sales technology stack is coming

Saturday Highlights: Twilio soars more than 90% in first day; Downloading your Netflix?

Twilio stock closes at $28.53, jumping more than 90% in first day of trading (VentureBeat)

Netflix Said to Be Getting Down with Downloading (Multichannel News)

NBC "Won't Cancel Shows Quickly" in Bid to Restore Comedy Brand (Hollywood Reporter)

Cutting the Cord: Apple TV shining brighter
(USA Today}

Salesforce partners with Girl Develop It: Salesforce’s CEO, Marc Benioff, and GDI’s Executive Director, Corinne Warnshuis

On June 7th, 2016 during TrailheaDX‘s keynote, Salesforce’s CEO, Marc Benioff, and GDI’s Executive Director, Corinne Warnshuis, announced Salesforce’s partnership with GDI.

Philly Tech People News 6/25/2016: Martina F. Aufiero joins Safeguard Scientifics as Managing Director, Technology; CardConnect names former PayPal tech exec CIO

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Cathy Avgiris put family first, became most powerful woman at Comcast (Denver Post)

Altice Reorgs Group Management Ahead of Cablevision Deal (Multichannel News)

CardConnect Names Former PayPal Tech Chief as CIO (Wall Street Journal: CIO Journal)

Martina F. Aufiero Joins Safeguard Scientifics As Managing Director, Technology (PR Newswire)

Razorfish Health names new managing director (Medical Marketing & Media)

Jay Sidhu Wins Ernst & Young Fintech Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in Greater Philadelphia

NFI CEO Sid Brown Wins EY Entrepreneur of the Year

Christie creates new cabinet post to protect N.J. from cyber attacks (

Scala names new general manager of EMEA (Digital Signage Today)

Erin Elmore: From QVC to RNC (

Links 6/24: Why Comcast is buying Icontrol; Synchronoss expanding in Bethlehem, moving local engineers to New Jersey

Proscape Technologies' mobile marketing app seeks market

Tom Paine

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I wrote about Horsham-based Proscape Technologies back in the Fall of last year. Its legacy business, which still exists, is closed-loop CRM systems for pharmaceutical salesforces.

In fact, Proscape pretty much popularized the concept of closed loop marketing in Pharma. "Closed loop marketing (CLM) is the process by which a pharmaceutical company develops marketing strategies and deploys them through one or more channels to reach their customers (the prescribers) and gain a sound understanding of what happens in the marketplace", according to PharmaGuy's (John Mack) Pharma Marketing Glossary.

In direct and web-based marketing one usually has a definite & immediately measurable closed loop in terms of sales results. But in pharma sales, results are often ambiguous and difficult to measure over time. Closed loop systems seek to measure what happens from a combination of factors to have a better understanding of causality, and the concept lives on in Pharma CRM today.

But for whatever reason, Proscape reached a point where it didn't see a future in the CRM market, perhaps due to the growing dominance of Veeva Systems and IMS Health(ex-Cegedim) and decided to focus its future efforts elsewhere. So it chose a niche that it knew well, the sales (or marketing) presentation, and the tools used in that process. And in the form of a new venture supported by new capital, it created the Marketing App Cloud.

Its a code free, mobile content management system for developing and managing field presentations. Proscape designed it to be used by marketing communications or ad agencies, customers it knew best from its pharma marketing experience (though Marketing App Cloud is not only for Pharma), and the creative origin of many sales presentations. And those agency people aren't coders, or may have minimal coding assistance available. The apps can run in iOS, Android or Windows Mobile. See a
demo here . List prices range from $10 to $45 per user per month.

I spoke with of Joe Edelman of PulseCX,a leading interactive healthcare marketing agency based in Montgomeryville, Pa. He uses Proscape's Marketing App Cloud to prepare presentations, and rates it highly on flexibility and ease of` use. Edelman finds it of particular value in developing presentations for medium-sized clients. The larger clients buying Veeva CRM can afford extensive customization, but smaller accounts can get the customization they need from the Marketing App Cloud.

Proscape would make the point that even large accounts would benefit by using Marketing App Cloud in terms of faster time to deployment.

In its CRM business, Proscape customized Microsoft Dynamics to its customers' needs. Now it no longer is actively involved in CRM implementation, and Salesforce is the CRM it sees its customers using most often. But there are data driven fields in Marketing App Cloud which can be tied in to whatever CRM the customer uses. There are also parameters to specify things such as who in the salesforce sees what version of a presentation.

There is a conundrum here, however. Proscape still has a larger number of employees working on supporting its legacy CRM customers, I believe, and the mobile app is still getting off the ground. Proscape designed the mobile business to be as self-servicing as possible in terms of sales, design, processing and support. But often things don't work that way. I see some evidence in Proscape's current job postings that its adding the type of support staff it needs.

They've been doing some good market development work, and have created excellent storytelling marketing content. But Proscape needs stronger ties to the technology community, a better way of describing and positioning the product, and perhaps a more strategic sales process.

I've been through transitioning a business from old tech to new tech before, and it can be challenging even if the technology is excellent.

Links 6/23: Comcast, carve up smart home vendor Icontrol; GE"s software plans

Links 6/22: Bayer, Dupont join ag-tech investment fund; Comcast X1 hotel trials set for Philadelphia

Links 6/21: Cablevision deal closes; Government oks Comcast/NBCU DreamWorks; Musk buys Musk

Dell's software sale: Boomi not included

Tom Paine

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Dell is selling its main software businesses to Francisco Partners and Elliot Management, it was announced this morning.

An immediate question of local interest is whether Dell Boomi would be included. Apparently not:

It has been evident that Michael Dell, in his interviews and tweets, takes a personal interest in Boomi.

Dell has had to sell the other software businesses to help finance its acquisition of EMC. The price of today's sale has not been disclosed by any participating parties, but some published sources have put it in the $2 billion range. Dell Boomi, despite of its strategic significance, would probably not sell for enough to make a material difference in reducing Dell's overall debt load.

Elliot Management, known as an activist, bought a small stake in Radnor-based Qlik Technologies early this year, bringing pressure that helped lead to its ultimate sale for $3 billion two weeks ago.

Elliot is not known, however, for taking passive positions.

Links 6/20: Comcast readies X1 for Olympics; On Uber's nonstop financing

Sunday Highlights: What key Philly software makers are doing for customers; Updates on Time Warner Cable, Cablevision deals

At June NJ Tech Meetup, Jet Reveals the Tech Secret Sauce That Helps It Compete with Amazon

Givon Zirkind,

Panel at the NJ Tech Meetup at Jet | Courtesy Jet via Twitter

The program at the June NJ Tech Meetup included a Q &A discussion with leading technologists from, the Hoboken e-commerce startup that is trying to take on Amazon.

The “fireside chat,” moderated by NJ Tech Meetup organizer Aaron Price, included Mike Hanrahan, cofounder and CTO of; Lev Gorodinski, vice president of engineering, who is responsible for building and indexing Jet's product catalog; Troy Kershaw, senior engineer, who is responsible for building the order-management system; and Dana Peele, a senior software engineer. Hanrahan, Gorodinski and Kershaw came from overseas to work at Jet: Hanrahan from Ireland, Gorodinski from Latvia and Kershaw from Australia. Peele is a New Jersey native.

Jet was started two years ago by Marc Lore, formerly of Quidsi (Jersey City), who had sold his startup to Amazon. Jet has another e-commerce site, (Omaha, Neb.), which is for home and garden products. Jet’s goal is to provide products to consumers at the least expensive price points. It also offers fast delivery — often in one day, two days max.

The startup’s engineers began writing the software behind Jet two years ago. The platform took 16 months to build and was launched in July 2015. The system was designed from the beginning to scale big. Now, in full production mode, the platform handles up to 300,000 searches per second. There are 10 times as many searches after a Jet ad appears on TV, and 20 times as many searches after the Super Bowl, panelists said. In addition, when the system is working to determine the best way to ship an order, it can calculate 100 million permutations.

To accommodate this load, Jet uses 2,800 cores and 600 servers spread over several data centers, provided by Microsoft's cloud.

The technologists said that one of the biggest problems facing e-commerce websites is the consolidation of product sources. Many e-commerce sites either sell their own products or a specific number of fixed brands. The catalog is typically curated in house, including the photography, design and production.

Jet, on the other hand, uses data feeds from vendors to create an online catalog. Jet employees never even see the product, the technologists revealed. This is very different from Amazon, where third-party vendors are constantly uploading items and pictures. The Jet engineers asserted that, while Amazon has hundreds of engineers reviewing products to normalize the catalog, they have just five guys.

Jet's catalog is huge, with 12 million live products, an additional 40 million products that are not currently available (due to they’re being out of stock or other situations) and 300 million products in their knowledge base.

Other software engineering issues discussed by the panel included search relevance and confidence. A search should display the item that the customer wants in the first or second place, they said. To achieve the company’s two-day shipping goal, a product and fulfillment check is initiated within four hours of receipt of an order. And Jet's “smart cart” feature bundled purchases.

Security is a big issue for Jet. Panelists noted that about two percent of the orders are fraudulent. Jet initially raised over $80 million in funding, then sought an additional $600 million in funding and is still seeking more investment. That money has also been a target for hackers, who spear phish Jet employees and try to buy Jet credentials on the Dark Web. Jet recently experienced downtime due to a payment-processing glitch. The company keeps live, evolving run books that document procedures on how to solve such problems.

Hanrahan discussed the reasons why Jet chose to use Microsoft Azure and F#. Azure's ability to scale was at the top of the list. Microsoft's offering of technical support in the form of sending engineers to Jet's physical location if necessary was another factor. Also, the ability of Microsoft’s cloud to provide stateless machines was important. Stateless machines are more accurate, especially in a cloud environment, he said.

The team chose F#, Hanrahan said, because F# is a functional language, immutable and stateless, which is important for a cloud environment. Also, F# is easy to debug and easier to “reason with,” he said.  The decision to go with F# did raise the question of where to find F# programmers. However, Jet found a local community of F# enthusiasts to tap.

That Marc Lore is a New Jersey native was not the only reason for situating Jet in the state. Originally in Montclair, and now headquartered in Hoboken, Jet is in close proximity to (and an easy commute for) many talented engineers, programmers and other employees, the panelists said.

Price asked the panel how each one of them came to work for Jet, and how those looking to apply to Jet should go about it.

Kershaw responded with a story. He was a tech evangelist, and when preparing to do a podcast on F#, he asked to interview a Jet employee for the podcast. That was how he connected with Jet, and he was later offered a job. Kershaw added, “The resume alone doesn't do it. You have to stand out. There is no artificial way to stand out.”

Hanrahan said that the cultural mission of Jet is “trust, transparency and fairness. We are a culture that shares our technical knowledge.” In addition, “Everyone is friendly. We are looking for friendly, nice people who are passionate about technology, are smart and get things done. Show us you are passionate about technology.”

Givon Zirkind is a contributor to NJTechWeekly. This article
originally appeared in NJTechWeekly and is republished here with its permission.    

Saturday Highlights: Marx’s vision will become reality, argues SAP veep; Analyst: Enterprise software sales 'baroque tribal ritual bloodletting'

ThingWorx headquarters is now Boston

Tom Paine

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I may have missed the memo on this, but ThingWorx has moved its headquarters from Exton to Boston. I don't know when it happened.

From its website:
"ThingWorx is based in Boston USA - the global hub of IoT innovation. Questions? Business inquiries? Big ideas? Please get in touch!"

It is certainly no surprise. ThingWorx and associated acquired companies have become the visible centerpiece of parent company PTC's strategy. PTC is based in suburban Boston. And ThingWorx' most important partner, GE, has just moved its headquarters from Connecticut to Boston.

And LiveWorx, PTC's huge annual IoT production, was held in Boston a couple of weeks ago. The highlight was PTC's virtual reality acquisition, Vuforia. An "A list' of speakers helped to reinforce PTC's image as the thought leader in industrial IoT.

ThingWorx' LinkedIn page has 243 employees listed, including 65 in the Philly area and 41 in the Boston area.

A request for information to ThingWorx has so far not been responded to.

Links 6/17: The "Chinese Netflix" plans big entry into US market; Oracle no longer breaks out database revenue

Vanguard's McNabb: 'We are a technology company " with 3,000 engineers

Tom Paine

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Whenever Vanguard Group CEO Bill McNabb talks, people listen.

Not only because Valley Forge-based Vanguard is the monster of the mutual funds business, with assets under management of about $3.4 trillion. But also because McNabb himself  is seen as a key influencer in the global financial services industry.

And at a Morningstar Investment conference on Wednesday, he made news in several areas. Not the least of which was the technology front. The trade website RIABiz quotes him as saying in a side talk after his main address, "We are a technology company", citing  its 3,000 person strong engineering force ( though I don't think he meant it was Vanguard's primary strength).  McNabb discusses a recent visit he and some other top Vanguard executives made to Silicon Valley:

“I mentioned I was really intrigued by some of the software development that we saw in Silicon Valley among the robo-advisors,” he says. “So we are working hard on how do we get that kind of capability within the firm to do more cutting edge? We have great technologists, but you know we are running big platform, legacy systems, so how do you develop something for this in three months the way you would see out of the Valley?

Vanguard has a startup product called 'Vanguard Personal Advisor Services' which is considered a hybrid, part algorithm-based robo and part high touch, personal call center assistance, and has had a very successful launch.  Of the independent, robo-based startups, of which Wealthfront and Betterment are best known, Vanguard is considered closest to Wealthfront, at least in terms of investment philosophy.

McNabb later added, "We are watching Alibaba in China very closely, and they have entered a space and done so very successfully,”
RIABiz reported.

Links 6/16: U.S. SEC charges former SAP America executive with insider trading; Salesforce said to be Goldman’s failed rival suitor for LinkedIn

Links 6/15: One Kings Lane marked down for sale; UniTek, rising from dead, gets Comcast work

Links 6/14: Title II Decision Draws Jeers From ISPs; GE opens Paris 'Digital Foundry' in international industrial IoT push

Links 6/13: Apple announces new IoT app called Home; FanDuel, DraftKings in Merger Talks

Microsoft to buy LinkedIn for $26B in cash, makes big move into enterprise social media: Highlights

Sunday Highlights: NY Times on Cable's lobbying efforts; Inquirer parent launches startup contest

Moore Partners With Philly's U School for Exhibition Showcasing Students' Interest in Technology as Tool for Civic Engagement

Saturday Highlights: Can SAP Win Over Die-Hard Tableau Fans?; Urban Outfitters doubles down on big stores

Links 6/10: Cable Tech - Google Fiber may use Wi-Fi to reach homes; Nokia swings deal for Gainspeed

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Google Fiber could use high-speed Wi-Fi to connect to homes (The Verge)

Nokia Swings Deal for Gainspeed (Light Reading)

Cathy Avgiris put family first, became most powerful woman at Comcast (Denver Post)

Comcast, Time Warner Cable to testify on customer service issues (The Hill)

Hulu live stream will wholesale for around $34 a month, include affiliates, analyst says (FierceCable)

PUC, feeling heat from Uber allies, votes to reconsider $11.4M fine (

Gawker Media Files for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy (Hollywood Reporter)

Urban Outfitters: Retail sales sluggish & $19M payday for Vetri (Philadelphia Business Journal)

Philly Tech People News 6/9/2015: Comcast exec leaves for soon to be Cablevision parent; West Philly's Carter now a top Spotify exec

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Marwan Fawaz Named CEO of Nest (Multichannel News)
Former Adelphia, Charter and Motorola Home executive.

Altice USA Names Schreiber Chief Content Officer (Multichannel News)
Schreiber was senior vice president, content acquisition for Comcast

SAP reshuffles product, executive decks to better target smaller companies (ZDNet)

I want India to be the most innovative place for SAP: Dilipkumar Khandelwal
(Business Standard)

Spotify hires star music manager Troy Carter to help fight Apple and Jay Z (Recode)
Carter is a native of West Philadelphia.

Dudnyk promotes Tobias to president after Powers (Medical Marketing & Media)

Pinnacle 21 Attracts Clinical Data Standards Executive (Press Release)

Panitch Schwarze Hires Experienced IP Attorneys in Philadelphia (Press Relesse)

Links 6/9: Telefonica to roll out ThingWorx IoT platform; Comcast didn't need billion dollar deal to get MVNO status

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Telefonica to roll out ThingWorx IoT platform (TotalTele)

Verizon's CFO: 'We're perfectly fine' inking MVNO deal with Altice or other cable operators (FierceWireless)

Time Warner Cable Internet speeds are “abysmal,” NY AG claims (Ars Technica)
Tim Wu, in official government capacity now, takes shots at Time Warner Cable.

Lehigh Valley FedEx Ground terminal to be company's largest in U.S., VP says (Morning Call)

Service robots are coming to help us (
Highlights work being done at Penn SEAS.

Riverside acquires Horsham-based CAD software resaler Prism Engineering as add-on to Fisher Unitech platform (Crain's Cleveland Business)

AstraZeneca CIO Dave Smoley’s 6-point cloud toolkit (Diginomica)

Philly edtech startup rebrands as $4M Series A round closes (Philadelphia Business Journal)

Veeva Systems, off of strong earnings, holds commercial summit in Philadelphia (upddate)

Tom Paine

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Veeva Systems (NYSE: VEEV) reported earnings for its 1st quarter 2017   (yes, its a bit ahead of most) on Thursday, May 26.

Though based in California, Veeva has a strong presence in the Philadelphia / New Jersey region, where so many of its Life Sciences customers are located. Much of its successful strategy originated from its Radnor office.

Revenue and earnings both exceeded estimates, and the company raised its guidance for the current quarter and full fiscal year. Revenue grew 33% to $119.8 million. Earnings fell slightly to $12.5 million from $13 million a year earlier; On a per share basis, earnings were flat at 9 cents a share.

Revenue growth was strong across both CRM, its original and largest product, and Vault, its regulatory documentation product. The thing that stood out to me was management's enthusiasm over the breadth and depth of opportunities for Veeva Vault.

It is important to understand the distinction between CRM and Vault. CRM was built on top of Salesforce's CRM,and Veeva has, at least for the length of its current contract with Salesforce, exclusive rights within the Life Sciences CRM market using the Salesforce platform, as I understand it.

Outside of CRM, however, Veeva Vault was custom built by Veeva and is completely its proprietary product. And thus Veeva can take Vault into any market it wants. And because it doesn't have to`pay a percentage of revenue to Salesforce, potentially earn higher margins as well.

So the news from last week was that Veeva is doing some exploratory selling in a couple of markets, or possibly for a couple of non-vertical applications, outside of life sciences. From the earnings call:

"This quarter we will start selling Vault outside of life sciences with a small dedicated go to market team. They will focus on regulated industries adjacent to life sciences with solutions that are based on our existing commercial content and quality applications."

There are several possibilities I can think of for Veeva, but one of them would be selling its just released quality management product  QMS  into OTC pharma manufacturing environments.

Vault is seeing strong growth across market segments (Clinical, Regulatory, Quality), and Veeva reported 18 seven-figure Vault customer relationships, up 100% year-over-year.

During the earnings conference call, CEO Peter Gassner cited Philly-based Spark Therapeutics and its effort to find a cure for blindness as an example of the exciting, vitally important things Veeva's clients were doing.

Veeva shares hit an all time high after the earnings report, and it had a market capitalization of $4.8 billion at today's close.

To give an example of Veeva's growing ecosystem, San Francisco-based Aktani today announced it had raised $17.5 million led by Safeguard Scientifics, at least partly on the strength of its partnership with Veeva.

The Veeva Commercial Summit kicked off today in Philadelphia, where Veeva has held it each year of the event's existence, and one can expect some new product announcements to be forthcoming from it. Veeva will also have a presence at DIA 2016, also in Philadelphia from June 26-30.

Veevs Product Announcements from Veeva Commercial Summit
New Veeva CRM Engage and Veeva CRM Engage Webinar Make Digital Engagement in Life Sciences Easier and More Compliant

Veeva Introduces Vault PromoMats DAM to Deliver Advanced Digital Asset Management Capabilities in Life Sciences

GSK Adds New Veeva Commercial Cloud Applications Following the Success of Veeva CRM

Links 6/8: Salesforce's Demandware buy : Good or bad; Comcast & Amazon, Aereo's ghost

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Salesforce acquires Demandware. Good? Bad? Buy! (Paul Greenberg/ZDNet)

Salesforce acquires Demandware to add Commerce Cloud (Diginomica)

Hewlett Packard Enterprise and GE are teaming up on the Internet of Things (Re/code)
No mention of GE IoT partner PTC ThingWorx, but that doesn't imply anything. Reading through the PR, HP's main role seems
to be supplying hardware and support, not IP snd software.

Aereo Assets Live On (Light Reading)

Amazon, Comcast Fire Up Tablet Promo (Multichannel News)

Pega CEO Alan Trefler and his conflict with public cloud (Diginomica)

I want India to be the most innovative place for SAP: Dilipkumar Khandelwal
(Business Standard India)

Comcast Business, ABC's 'Shark Tank' team up for casting call in Philly (Philadelphia Business Journal)

Subaru SelectsDemand Aria Systems to Monetize Its Connected Car Initiatives (Press Release)

Safeguard Scientifics leads $17.5 million financing in SF-based Aktana

Tom Paine

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San Francisco-based Aktana announced today that Radnor-based Safeguard Scientifics (NYSE:  SFE) has led a $17.5 million funding with participation from returning investor Starfish Ventures and others. Aktana had previously raised $12.5 million, according to CrunchBase.

Aktana's initial product offering is what it refers to as Decision Engines, and its first major application is targeted at the Life Sciences industry. I would make a rough comparison conceptually to Salesforce-backed InsideSales (with the caveat that I've seen neither), except InsideSales tries to engineer much of the waste out of the telephone sales process, while Aktana is aimed at field reps.

It is designed, according to a company's individual strategy and preferences, to reeingeneer the rep's workflow to anticipate roadblocks, identify specific events, and navigate towards goals, while leaving the rep in control. Aktana sees opportunities beyond Pharma, but at present that accounts for virtually all of its business.

From Aktana website

Aktana was not born as a pharma specialist, CEO David Ehrlich ( sociology major undergrad,  Masters in engineering at Stanford, Harvard MBA, ex McKinsey) told me in a phone interview. It had the concept and literally called around to companies in different industries, to find out if they saw an application for it. Finally they found a taker in Merck Japan. Pfizer soon followed. It took three or four years to reach this point.

Aktana's success with these customers came to the attention of leading Life Sciences cloud vendor Veeva Systems, which is headquartered not too far from Aktana in its new Silicon Valley digs (though Pleasanton may not technically be in the Valley) and has an important east coast base in Radnor. Eventually Veeva incorporated Aktana as an optional add-on to its CRM offering named Veeva CRM Suggestions. Ehrlich quickly ticks off the names of six or seven major pharma customers, and says growth is happening quickly. IMS Health, the likely #2 vendor in Life Sciences CRM, also has partnered with Aktana.

It plans to use the new funds to expand product development and to accelerate its global reach by opening offices in China and Europe, adding to current offices in San Francisco, New York City, and Tokyo. Al Wiegman, Managing Director at Safeguard, will join Aktana’s Board of Directors.

Thoma Bravo, one week after its $3 billion Qlik deal, acquires Wayne- based Elemica

Tom Paine

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Elemica, a Wayne-based supply chain software company specializing in process industries (chemicals, petrol) has been acquired by PE firm Thoma Bravo. This comes a week after Thoma Bravo's uncontested $3 billion bid for Radnor-based Qlik Technologies. Terms were not disclosed.

I'm not sure how big Elemica is in terms of revenue, but I do know its applications are typically complex and should generate considerable revenue, though since customers were often Elemica owners I don't what pricing or revenue reflected. It has 217 employees on LinkedIn.

Thoma Bravo, based in San Francisco snd Chicago, had made two other fairly recent buys in the Philly area, quality management software firm Sparta Systems of Hamilton, NJ in July 2014, and iPipeline of Exton last summer.

The website SpendMatters, which has covered Elemica in the past, has the best first take on the deal.

My understanding is that the owners of Elemica prior to this transaction were process industry companies that would also be its customers, but I haven't been able to absolutely confirm the past ownership structure.

Update: Elemica representative confirmed that the companies owning Elemica were the process industry enterprises that were most likely to be its customers. Not absolutely sure what companies were owners of record at time of Elemica's sale this week, but this article excerpt talks about who was on board at its founding. Notice that some of these companies, such as Dow and Rohm & Haas, have been impacted by M&A.

August 16, 2000 --The eight founding participants of Elemica announced today that they have signed a definitive agreement that formally creates the premier neutral, independent and secure e-marketplace for the chemical industry. ATOFINA, BASF , Bayer , BP, Dow, DuPont , Rohm and Haas and Shell have signed the document that will fund and accelerate the establishment of Elemica Limited as a company. Together, the eight founders are investing a total of $100 million in the company. The target operational launch date for the company's transactional site is December 2000.

In addition to the eight signed founders, 12 other companies have already agreed in principle to invest and participate in the marketplace, and are now in the process of entering into definitive agreements with Elemica. These companies include Air Products, Ashland Distribution Company, Celanese, CHEMCENTRAL, Ciba Specialty Chemicals, Degussa -Hüls, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, Mitsui Chemicals , Rhodia, Solvay , Sumitomo Chemical and Van Waters & Rogers.

A quick look at Elemica's owners will lead to the conclusion that virtually all are SAP customers. Given that, I'm surprised that SAP didn't offer a bid, though we don't know that it didn't bid for sure. But there's been a pattern
in which financial buyers outbid strategic buyers for mature software companies.

Links 6/7: Malone weighs Vodafone bid; Lincoln National, iPipeline partner to broaden reach to young

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'Cable Cowboy' Malone weighs his next move in Europe (Reuters)

Verizon may pony up $3 billion for Yahoo's Web business (CNET)

Lincoln seeks mass youth market with iPipeline automated insurance ( Philly Deals)

Verifone Plunges 28%: Q3 View Misses by a Mile; Plans Restructuring (Barron's Tech Trader Daily)

Qadium raises millions to build IoT search engine

PTC bets on software for augmented reality requiring no coding know-how (Boston Business Journal)
ThingWorx parent on its LiveWorx event in Boston.

Sources: Oracle Suffers Cloud Capacity Shortage, Some Large Customers Unable To Use Service Credits (CRN)

Salesforce wants to raise a posse of new developers (Diginomica)

Links 6/6: Comcast: Of lawsuits & countersuits; Netflix would benefit from Comcast, Charter carriage (Do ya think?)

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Comcast counter-sues Rovi, says tech company needs to settle patent beef in NYC, not Texas (FierceCable)

TiVo’s new owner isn’t that interested in making set-top boxes (Ars Technica)

Analyst: Charter, Comcast Could Help Solve Netflix Woes (Multichannel News)

Suits say Comcast plays hardball with contractors (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Inside the boot camp that teaches startup founders how to raise millions of dollars (Business Inisider)
The boot camp is run by First Round Capital.

On Deck and Intuit run joint fund to back loans (CNBC)

News Analysis: Acquisition Brings Salesforce Customers To The Commerce Party (R "Ray" Wang/Enterprise Irregulars)

New Majority Investment Values Sitecore at $1B (CMSwire)

Industry rides along as Pennsylvania develops self-driving laws (ReadWrite)

Cloud cost-management firm Cloudability raises $24M in new financing round (GeekWire)

QTS Buys DuPont Fabros Tech’s New Jersey Data Center (Data Center Knowledge)

The Verizon Guy returns

Tom Paine

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Somewhere a while back I had a conversation with a reasonably informed person about Flo, the Progressive spokesperson.

The question was what would happen when Progressive was through with Flo, since (A) her marketability as an ad personality for other brands might be limited in the future and (B) Progressive might want to keep her out of other ads, particularly a competetitor's.

And that other person suggested that Verizon might have given the Verizon Guy some type of long-term buyout with a non-compete to keep him off the airwaves (or fiber or coax or whatever).

Apparently NOT.

The Verizon Guy, Paul Marcarelli, has returned with a vengeance, only this time he's employed by ....Sprint.

Sunday Highlights: Analytical Graphics, Birchbox

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Salesforce's data centre team 'fought' AWS cloud outsourcing (The Register)

Google's Nest may become a different kind of IoT company after CEO Fadell leaves (PCWorld)

Planetary Resources Raises $21.1 Million In Series A Funding; Unveils Advanced Earth Observation Capability (SpaceRef)
Analytical Graphics of Exton is one of several partners to this startup which seeks to identify and eventually mine valuable mineral-laden asteriods in space.

Update: Planetary Resources is now focused on using satellites equipped with its thermal infrared and hyperspectral sensors to record images of crop formations on earth, containing enough detail to improve crop productivity. Some big names in addition to AGI are partners.

Analytical Graphics has over 900 employees on LinkedIn (doesn't necessarily mean it has that many), of which about 170 are based in the Philly area.

Retail analytics: Big and Getting Bigger (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Birchbox Finds Cute Boxes Filled With Makeup Aren't Enough (Bloomberg)
Birchbox, backed early by First Round Capital, has been a big trendsetting hit, but still hasn't reached profitabiliy. So one of the things its trying is the old retail concept of brick and mortar.

Birchbox, which has raised more than $70 million to date, laid off 15% of its staff in January.

First Round Capital made Birchbox cofounder and former co-CEO Hayley Barna a venture partner early this year.

For all things and all seasons, a subscription box (CNBC)
BirchBox started the trend.

The rise of SDDC and the future of enterprise IT (ZDNet)

Links 6/3: Comcast advancing smart home plans; Anaplan, ex-iPipeline CEO puts Philly's tech scene in context

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Comcast Pursues Bigger Piece of Smart Home Market (Multichannel News)

Marwan Fawaz Named CEO of Nest (Multichannel News)
Former Adelphia Cable, Motorola Home exec.

From Silicon Valley: Expat CEO puts Philly's small tech scene in context
( Philly Deals)

Qlik Took ‘Easy Way Out’ with Little Premium, Says Disgruntled CLSA (Bsrron's Tech Trader Daily)

Anthos Capital leads $5 mln round for goPuff (PE Hub)

WeWork Cuts 7% Of Staff (Fortune)
Says going ahead with planned expansion in Philadelphia and other cities this summer. But I remain somewhat dubious of its business model and valuation. Not convinced it will scsle.

Is Salesforce Big Enough To Avoid Overtures Of Amazon, Others? (Investor's Business Daily)

Microsoft Board Mulls Sales Force Revamp to Speed Shift to Cloud (Bloomberg)

AT&T’s Interest in Yahoo May Doom Private Equity’s Buying Hopes (Bloomberg)

Email to Qlik Employees

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Email to Qlik Employees
I am pleased to share with you today some exciting news about the future of Qlik, and our plans to begin the next chapter in our incredible journey. And I have no doubt that our future will be bright, and filled with exciting new opportunities and challenges.
Today we announced we have entered into an agreement to be acquired by Thoma Bravo, a leading technology-focused private equity firm. You can read today’s press release ( and please plan to attend a Town Hall with me and members of the X Team later this morning. A separate invitation will be sent shortly.
With a purchase price of $30.50 per share, Qlik is valued at approximately $3.0 billion, which demonstrates the tremendous value we have created together over the past several decades. As with transactions of this nature, the agreement is subject to stockholder approval, certain regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. With the closing of this transaction we will become a private company, which we expect to occur in the third quarter of 2016.
This is a major milestone in our efforts to grow our business and build upon the great foundation we’ve created together. Going private will position us exceptionally well and gives us added flexibility to continue to develop industry-leading solutions and products to our customers – which will help us continue to grow as a company.
Thoma Bravo is one of the most experienced and successful private equity firms in the United States, providing financial, strategic and operating support to businesses and their management teams. They are deeply knowledgeable about our industry and recognize the value that Qlik delivers– a platform that lets our customers see the whole story that lives within their data.
Throughout this process, the X team and I have come to know the Thoma Bravo team well, and we are fully confident that they are the right partner for Qlik both strategically and culturally. They have the highest praise for our team members, our innovation and the reputation we’ve earned in the market. They are now eager to partner to achieve even greater success.
I know there are questions about what this means for you and the future of Qlik going forward. While we will seek to answer all of your questions in the coming days and weeks, what’s most important now is that we move forward as one team, appreciate the incredible opportunity ahead of us.
What makes Qlik special is not going away nor are our business drivers: to win new business, expand our operating margin and accelerate profitability. Please share your enthusiasm and reassure our customers, partners and all stakeholders that Qlik is creating value for the long term and today’s news is just another step in our ongoing journey.
Thanks for your continued commitment. I am especially proud that this team has not been distracted by the media speculation over the past several months. You have continued to deliver with both focus and results.
Now let’s build the next exciting chapter together!

Radnor-based QLIK accepts Thoma Bravo's $3 billion, $28.50 per share offer (Update)

Tom Paine

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This morning QLIK accepted PE firm Thoma Bravo's offer of $3 Billion, or $30.50 per share. Headquarters will remain in Radnor.

The price is a 40 percent premium to the company’s "unaffected 10-day average stock price prior to March 3." That's the date that Elliot Management announced it had bought 8.9% of QLIK shares. Elliot's purchase followed a short-term dip brought on by a dissapointing earnings report and a critical article in Barron's.

My guess is potential investors who looked at QLIK saw a mixture of good and bad news coming down, and were not willing to pay a premium over the price range shares settled in after Elliot's stake was announced.

QlIK had $370 million in cash & equivalents as 3/31.

QLIK's headcount is widely dispersed geographically, and less than 10% of its roughly 2500 employees work out of Radnor.

Another issue is what happens to CEO Lars Björk. He has had more pluses than minuses in leading QLIK to get to this point, but has been slow to respond to some key changes (dataviz, big data) in the market. My guess is he will be gone, one way or another.

Reuters is reporting that Thoma Bravo is prepared to make an offer to Qlik Technologies, perhaps as soon as today.

Thoma Bravo will make a binding offer of as much as $2.8 billion, or $28 to $30 per share, the report says. That price is really not higher than Qlik's trading range either before or after Paul Singer's Elliot Management Corp bought roughly a 10% stake in the Radnor-based business intelligence software vendor, with the exception of s brief dip in February. Elliot Management's buy was reported in early March. QLIK was trading as high as $32 today.

There are people who believe Qlik's technology is superior to Tableau's or that of most other BI or DataVis companies. But if the Reuters report is accurate, perhaps no one is willing to step forward and pay a premium.

Based out of San Francisco and Chicago, Thoma Bravo is not a stranger to the Philadelphia area.Its portfolio includes iPipeline of Exton and Sparta Systems of Hamilton, NJ. I consider it to be one of smartest buyout firms in the software/SaaS space.

Denn Howlett has a somwhat skeptical view of QlikTech and the auction process.

Update: Qlik Will Likely Reject P.E. Bid As Too Low, Say CLSA, Brean (Barron' Tech Trader Daily)

Links 6/2: Neat turns its receipt-scanning app into subscription-based SaaS; PA looking to lead transportation revolution

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Big Data Firm Qlik Technologies OKs $3 Billion Private Equity Offer (Investor's Business Daily)

Neat turns its receipt-scanning app into subscription-based software (SearchCloudApplications)
Outsourced much of its software development.

SAP reshuffles product, executive decks to better target smaller companies (ZDNet)

PA Looking to Lead Transportation Revolution (Politics PA)

Uber's No Good, Very Bad Deal with Saudi Arabia (Dan Primack/Fortune)

Veeva Systems Inc Is Just Getting Started (Motley Fool)


Ex-Employee Sues Oracle Over Alleged Cloud Accounting Shenanigans, Oracle Plans Countersuit (CRN)

Catching up with Stephen DeAngelis, CEO of NJ company Massive Dynamics and Newtown, PA’s Enterra Solutions

Marc Weinstein

Stephen F. DeAngelis, CEO of Enterra Solutions and Massive Dynamics, a Princeton-based company | Courtesy Enterra Solutions

Stephen F. DeAngelis, a leading authority on artificial intelligence systems, will lend his expertise to the growing area of cognitive reasoning technology at Princeton University.

DeAngelis was recently appointed as a visiting professional executive at the university’s department of chemistry, where he will work in the laboratory of Professor Herschel A. Rabitz with researchers and other university faculty members to study applications of cognitive computing.

DeAngelis, CEO of Princeton-based Massive Dynamics and Newtown, Pennsylvania-based Enterra Solutions, both specializing in artificial intelligence systems, will also be involved in examining how high dimensional model representation (HDMR) can be used to improve the efficiency of cognitive reasoning platforms. HDMR is comprised of a set of mathematical techniques used for improving the efficiency of deduction and learning involved in the high-dimensional input and output behavior of complex systems.

“I am pleased to have Stephen DeAngelis in this close working relationship with Professor Rabitz,” said Professor Pablo G. Debenedetti, Princeton University Dean for Research, in a press release. “I am also pleased that he will have the opportunity to interact with other faculty in the sciences and engineering to make his presence in the Rabitz Lab most valuable for all parties.”

DeAngelis commented that the technologies at both of his companies, combined with the university’s work in HDMR, “create an ideal testing ground for the advancement of basic computational concepts while also being of intellectual value to laboratory researchers.”

Massive Dynamics is a bespoke applied mathematics company focused on the analysis and control of complex systems through the use of a sophisticated mathematics engine and design-of- analysis approach. Enterra is a cognitive computing company that combines artificial intelligence (semantic reasoning and ontologies), sophisticated mathematics and natural language processing.

Founded in 2014, Massive Dynamics is located in Princeton to benefit from the proximity of Princeton University, especially from research interactions with the university.  Most of the employees at Massive Dynamics are Ph.D.s who received their academic degrees from Princeton in applied mathematics or related fields.  Enterra is located in Newtown because of the proximity to DeAngelis’ residence.

DeAngelis’ appointment follows a long and illustrious career in the field of cognitive computing.

His idea of launching an artificial intelligence system for companies to provide them with a better understanding of their customers and, hopefully, to improve their bottom-lines can be traced back to one of the darkest and deadliest days in U.S. history.

On September 11, 2001, DeAngelis' sister was working in a building flanking the World Trade Center complex when planes hijacked by terrorists crashed into the two towers. His sister fortunately escaped unharmed from her office building on that "highly traumatic day," DeAngelis recalled.

But that tragic event led DeAngelis to wonder if the massive death and destruction that day could have been prevented if government agencies had regularly shared information on potential terrorist plots and other threats to the nation’s security.

At that time, DeAngelis had a technology consulting company called “Enterra Strategies,” but changed that name to the current one shortly after the WTC attack, signaling a switch in its focus to technology designed to improve the government's ability to analyze and share security-related data.

Back then, the government had a "connect-the-dots problem" when exchanging information on security-related matters, said DeAngelis. "I decided it would be a good thing to embark upon a business used for information-security applications."

Five years ago, Enterra decided that its advanced cognitive computing system could also help other industry sectors, such as consumer goods, retail, financial services, life sciences and chemicals. Enterra's specialty of making sense from mountains of disparate data seemed to be needed for these businesses — all ripe for disruption.

Enterra's cognitive computing and data-driven analytics allows organizations to capture, curate and analyze data, and provides them with the best ways to use this information to create efficiencies in their operations, or to make machines think more like humans.

Enterra’s cognitive computing platform, called the “Enterra Enterprise Cognitive System,” produces insightful analyses of high volumes of data that allow companies to more effectively launch new products or services, improve customer engagement or fine-tune marketing strategies.

The technology uses mathematical and statistical analysis combined with artificial intelligence to create "an efficient and meaningful approach" to analyzing vast amounts of data, DeAngelis said.

One Enterra client, spice-making giant McCormick & Company, is using Enterra's cognitive computing engine to acquire information on consumers' tastes. The company's FlavorPrint system, which analyzes taste preferences and creates a visual image of them, is based on the premise that a person's taste profile is as unique as his or her fingerprint.

Consumers fill out a survey on the FlavorPrint website about their food preferences, eating habits and additional information, which is then compared with McCormick's research data on food tastes and other factors.  The information is used to increase customer engagement by offering personalized recipes and to help food retailers and suppliers boost sales.

Retailers also are a prime target for Enterra's technology. Stores are using omni-channel strategies to ensure that both their online and in-store operations are allowing consumers every available item for purchasing. But this also means that retailers need to quickly analyze all of this data in the hope of creating a more favorable customer experience and increase sales.

If the data analysis has to be done manually, however, it could result in lost sales. For example, a retailer offering an in-store coupon to customers requires their information to be quickly analyzed after they walk into the store, in order for the promotion to be successful.  It could take hours with humans analyzing the data, whereas machines can easily handle that task in minutes.

DeAngelis said that the healthcare sector is another industry that would greatly benefit from the company’s artificial intelligence platform.

For instance, hospitals using the company's technology would receive more information about their patients’ medical histories, enabling them to provide better treatment options. "With cognitive computing, we can utilize more specific drugs and other therapies to treat patients," he said.

Improved analysis of patient data would also minimize the use of trial-and-error treatments, thereby helping to lower healthcare costs and financially reward those healthcare providers who effectively manage patient care.

There is some confusion over Enterra’s technology and other systems that are built to think like humans, DeAngelis noted.

Other systems are designed for “deep learning,” that is, the ability to recognize objects and translate speech in real time, but Enterra’s system goes significantly beyond that.

DeAngelis said that the company’s cognitive computing platform also has “deep understanding,” or the ability to dig deeper into data so as to better enable companies to solve vexing problems.

“With cognitive computing, we can actually deeply understand why things are happening,” he said.

DeAngelis added that the company — which has raised $40 million from investors — is "growing quite rapidly," with a client roster that includes some of the world’s biggest brands.

Exuding confidence that Enterra will be a leader in the cognitive computing area, an industry expected to reach between $13 billion and $35 billion worldwide by 2020, DeAngelis said that Enterra’s technology is quite unique.  "We are the only one in our space doing what we do."

Marc Weinstein is contributor to  NJTechWeekly. This article
originally appeared in NJTechWeekly, and is republished here with its permission.    

Philly Tech People News 6/1/2016: Kopelman to chair Philly newspaper board; Comcast promotes CTO Werner

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Josh Kopelman replaces Gerry Lenfest as PMN chair (
He's non-executive chair, not CEO, so Kopelman might not be too hands on, but it will be interesting to see what he

Josh Kopelman hopes to bring innovation to Philly’s biggest newspapers (Q&A) (Billy Penn)

Tony Werner Promoted to President, Technology and Product, Comcast Cable; Sree Kotay Promoted to Chief Technology Officer

Rick Bulotta has left PTC ThingWorx as of eoy 2015; at ThingWorx he was co-founder and CTO. He left it as possibly the most successful US industrial IoT startup, embedded at GE and having other revenue streams outside of GE as well.
He was going to take it easy for awhile in transition, but seems busier than most people, judging from his LinkedIn page and this Technically Philly post.

Bela Bajaria Departs Universal Television as President; NBC’s Pearlena Igbokwe Set to Take Over Studio (Variety)

U.S. fund company Vanguard names Michael Rollings finance chief (Reuters)

Flash-sale e-retailer Rue La La promotes a co-founder to CEO (Internet Retailer)
Boston-based Rue La La is one piece of Michael Rubin's Kynetic LLC, but like most flash sale sites its had some issues to sort through.

href="">Population Health Management Tool Developed at CHOP Wins Data Sharing Prize (Health Analytics)

Comstar Supply Adds Industry Veteran to Leadership Team

Links 6/1: Salesforce buys Demandware to strengthen ecommerce; Comcast may spend biliions in wireless auction - analyst

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Salesforce slurps up Demandware for $2.8bn (The Register)

Salesforce takes aim at e-commerce with $2.8 bln Demandware buy (Reuters)

Partners Cheer Salesforce Acquisition Of Demandware As Key For Tapping Into Booming Digital Commerce Market (CRN)
Quotes Radnor-based Emtec.

News Analysis: Marketo Acquired by Vista Equity Partners for $1.8b, What It Means For Customers (Cindy Zhou / Constellation Research)

Uber Turns to Saudi Arabia for $3.5 Billion Cash Infusion (New York Times)

Pharma Packager PCI Sells for More Than $1 Billion (Fortune)

AT&T, Verizon, Tmobile, Comcast, Dish prep billions for US broadband sale ( Philly Deals)
Biggest news if it materializes: "Comcast is expected to spend US$5-7bn, based on our survey of institutional investors" (Investment Bank says)

Murdoch: MVPD Out-of-Market Streaming ‘Inevitable’ (Multichannel News)

Comcast service ratings are better, but still low (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Could This Be Apple's OLED Touchbar-ready MacBook Pro? (Fortune)

Software company opens Allentown office (Allentown Morning Call)