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Apptio's Bob Kimball (File photo via RealNetworks)

Apptio, fresh off a $50 million funding round, has hired former Real Networks CEO Bob Kimball as its new executive vice president of operations and corporate development, GeekWire has learned.

It’s a high-profile hire, and another hint that Apptio CEO Sunny Gupta is prepping the company for a possible IPO.

The Bellevue-based company hasn’t yet publicly announced the hiring, but it’s introducing Kimball to employees this morning at a company meeting. In the position, Kimball will lead all of Apptio’s corporate operating functions, including human resources, legal, finance, information-technology, corporate development and business development.

Kimball was with RealNetworks for 12 years, serving in positions including general counsel before succeeding founder Rob Glaser as the company’s chief executive.

After leading RealNetworks through a restructuring, the straight-talking Kimball resigned from the job abruptly in March 2011, without explaining the reasons for the decision beyond his desire to “find new challenges and opportunities.”

Apptio, which offers on-demand software and services for managing corporate IT departments, counts companies including Bank of America, Boeing, Cisco, Microsoft, Facebook and JPMorgan Chase among its customers.

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