After 21 years together and a blockbuster $8.3 billion acquisition, Concur co-founders Mike Hilton and Rajeev Singh today announced that they are stepping down from the pioneering maker of travel and entertainment expense management software.
Their last day at the Bellevue company will be Jan. 30 — which interestingly enough is the day both are scheduled to speak about their entrepreneurial journey as part of GeekWire’s annual Startup Day event.
“Mike and Raj have been instrumental in nurturing our company and growing it to incredible heights,” writes Concur CEO Steve Singh in a message to employees. “What Mike and Raj did better than anything else is foster a culture that brought out the best in everyone.”
The announcement of the departures comes almost exactly one month after SAP completed its acquisition of Concur for $8.3 billion — one of the biggest acquisitions of a Seattle area software company in recent history.
Concur started by selling shrink-wrapped software in the early 1990s, and it is one of the few that successfully transitioned its business model to cloud-based software. It has continued to grow and expand its footprint in the travel sector through a series of acquisitions in recent years. It now employs 4,200 worldwide.
“The history of the story, I think is one of a series of pivots,” Rajeev Singh said of Concur at the 9Mile Labs Demo Day event in Seattle last month. He added that the company was successful because it was never thinking of a quick exit, instead focusing on building a great product and service.
“We stuck with the original idea, but we had to be willing to change,” said Rajeev Singh. “Along the way, we made plenty of mistakes, but the willingness to change, and the willingness to bet on that change and the willingness to believe in what we thought was right because we knew our customer well, was essential to being able to build the company.”
Here’s the full memo that Steve Singh, the older brother of Rajeev, sent out to employees today:
Today we shared that Mike Hilton and Raj Singh will step down from their positions as Chief Product Officer and Chief Operating Officer/President respectively. Elena Donio, Concur’s Executive Vice President and General Manager, has been appointed as our new President. Barry Padgett, EVP, Traveler Services has been named Chief Product Officer. Both Elena and Barry have been with Concur for more than 15 years and are leaders I’m proud to have leading our company.
When Mike, Raj and I started out 21 years ago, we had a dream of building a world-class software business that would transform expense management as we know it. Mike and Raj have been instrumental in nurturing our company and growing it to incredible heights. What Mike and Raj did better than anything else is foster a culture that brought out the best in everyone. We not only achieved that, but also brought the best to the world. Concur is where it is today, thanks to the both of them.
Needless to say, we love them and will miss them very much. I will always consider Mike and Raj a part of the Concur family. We are so grateful for their tireless leadership and wish them the very best in their future endeavors. As for Concur, I am excited about the future ahead — what we can achieve in 2015, and how we can accelerate our vision of The Perfect Trip.
– Steve Singh, Concur