—Context Relevant, a big data analytics startup which underwent a management shakeup last year, named Joseph Polverari as the company’s new chief executive officer.
Polverari’s past work in building software services for the financial industry will help the Seattle-based machine learning company grow.
”As one of the leading enterprise machine learning companies, we believe Context Relevant has category defining potential, particularly given the successes they have had in the financial services and security markets,” said Tim Porter, general partner at Madrona Venture Group and Context Relevant board member. “We felt Joe’s strong strategic sense, track record of rapid innovation in building data-oriented products and businesses, as well as deep industry experience and unwavering customer focus, made it clear to the board that he was the right choice to lead the company through its next phase of growth.”
Polverari previously served as chief strategy and development officer at Yodlee, where he started, built, launched and directed Yodlee Interactive, their financial data and platform API service, as well as YNext, the company’s big data, analytics and innovation engine.
Context Relevant cut as much as a third of its staff last year after founder and former CEO Stephen Purpura left the company. Venture capitalist Chris Kelley briefly served as CEO and oversaw the “deep operational review” that led to the cuts. The company Context Relevant raised $13.5 million in venture funding in 2014, bringing total funding at the time to $42 million. Backers include Goldman Sachs, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Formation 8, Madrona, New York Life and Bloomberg Beta.
—Puppet Labs appointed Sanjay Mirchandani as its first president and chief operating officer. He will direct the Portland, Ore.-based server automation software company’s go-to-market operations and execution, challenging companies such as Seattle-based Chef and others.
“Puppet has been scaling at a breakneck pace for the past 11 years, but we know that the biggest opportunities and challenges still lie ahead of us,” said Puppet founder and CEO Luke Kanies in a statement. “Sanjay is uniquely qualified to help us take advantage of that opportunity.”
Mirchandani comes to Puppet from VMWare, where he was senior vice president and general manager of Asia Pacific and Japan. He also led EMC’s Global Centers of Excellence. Prior to that, he held various senior management roles at Microsoft.
The move comes as the company prepares to go public, with Puppet Labs CFO Bill Koefoed, a former Skype and Microsoft exec, telling Bloomberg last year that the server-automation software company could go public as soon as the spring of 2016, when annual revenues are expected to hit $100 million.
The company has raised $86 million in total funding from investors, including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, True Ventures, Google Ventures, VMware and Cisco Systems.
Kanies and Mirchandani will work together to oversee the two vital halves of the business.
“Luke and Sanjay are a great match to lead Puppet through the next stage of the company’s growth,” said Gerri Elliott, a Puppet board member. “With these changes, Luke can tenaciously focus on innovation, while Sanjay can focus on getting that innovation out to companies across the globe, and ensuring they are successful.”