—ExtraHop, the Seattle-based IT operations analytics company, has appointed Mark Anderson to its board of directors. Anderson is the executive VP of worldwide field operations for Palo Alto Networks, an online security company. His focus is sales, support, and customer service in the technology infrastructure market.
As a member of the ExtraHop board, Anderson will advise the company on go-to-market strategy and global field sales operations as it continues to scale.
Prior to joining Palo Alto Networks, Anderson was the executive VP of sales F5 Networks, where he led the Seattle security and networking company to $1 billion in revenue. Before that, he was at Lucent Technologies and Cisco Systems.
“Mark earned his reputation bringing disruptive technologies to market,” said Jesse Rothstein, CEO and co-founder of ExtraHop in a release. “His success selling emerging hardware and software platforms into the enterprise is unparalleled. Mark will be an influential guiding force for ExtraHop, helping us capitalize on our sales momentum and industry-wide adoption as the foundation for real-time IT Operations Analytics.”
Since securing a $41 million Series C round from Technology Crossover Ventures in May 2014, bringing total funding in the 7-year-old company to $61 million, ExtraHop has experienced rapid growth. Last year, the company doubled its employees, adding over 150 people over the course of the year, and expanded into six new countries.
—Mark Pincus, who returned to the helm of embattled social game maker Zynga last year, after former Microsoft gaming exec Don Mattrick departed, is once again stepping down from the top post. He’s being replaced at the San Francisco company by Frank Gibeau, a former Electronic Arts exec and board member at Zynga since August 2015. Pincus will serve as executive chairman of the board.
“I recruited Frank seven months ago to become an active board member to advise and coach our teams,” said Pincus in a press release. “Frank has mentored product teams, led roadmap meetings and delivered inspiring talks to our game making and PM communities. Frank has also been a big supporter of our move to smaller more nimble teams. Equally important, we have worked well together and share a common vision for Zynga around mobile and social gaming.”
Zynga has struggled as of late, and in an earnings call last month, the maker of hit games such as Farmville and Words With Friends said that its audience declined due to a lack of new game releases. In the fourth quarter, daily active users dropped by 24 percent year-over-year. The stock is down nearly 20 percent this year.
Zynga also has slashed its staffing in the past two years, laying off hundreds of workers and closing game studios, including one in Seattle.
—Simply Measured, a social media analytics company in Seattle, has hired Victor (Vic) Davis to be its new VP of customer success, where he will be responsible for all post-sale activities, including customer on-boarding and enablement, account management, and renewals. Previously, Davis was at Salesforce and ExactTarget, working in professional services and overseeing large global accounts.
Simply Measured has raised $29.4 million to date and currently has 100,000 marketers and 50 percent of the Interbrand 100 companies using their analytics tools to measure social media engagement.
“Vic is one of the best SaaS customer success leaders in the eco-system,” said Kazi in a news release. “Throughout his career, he has helped customers navigate business value and innovation while leading teams that deliver results.”
—Starbucks COO Troy Alstead resigned from the global coffee house chain, the company said in an SEC filing. The company did not give a reason for his resignation, but Alstead is quoted on the Starbucks website saying last year that he wanted to spend more time with his kids and to do nonprofit work in ocean preservation. Before he resigned, many believed Alstead was being groomed to become the CEO of the company.
Alstead left for an extended unpaid leave, which the company called a “coffee break” in March of last year and now has decided not to return.
Starbucks appointed Kevin Johnson, a former Microsoft executive, to the role of president and COO in Alstead’s absence. Prior to leaving, Alstead had been with Starbucks since 1992 in a variety of roles. Before serving as COO, Alstead was the CFO for Starbucks, its CAO, and the president of its global business services group. He led the company’s global expansion into 66 countries.
Despite his absence, Starbucks had a successful year, with comparable sales rising in the United States in 2015 and continuing its global expansion.
—9Mile Labs, a Seattle tech accelerator, has named five tech industry leaders to a new advisory board. Gary Rubens, angel investor and founder of StartIt Labs; Robert (Bob) Kelly, Corporate VP at Microsoft; Heather Redman, angel investor and VP of business operations and general counsel at Indix; Tom Casey, VP of platform and infrastructure at Apptio; and Michael (Mike) Orbach, managing director and head of technology investment banking at Cascadia Capital. These five will support 9Mile Labs in building the startup ecosystem in Seattle as it invests in fledgling B2B companies.
Founded in 2013, 9Mile Labs has graduated several companies of note, such as Ghostruck, a moving services company; Comr.se, which connects brands to customer channels; and Transpose, an information management platform.
In November, 9Mile Labs began its fifth accelerator program with 11 enterprise and B2B startups, bringing its total investments to 48. Most companies who participated in 9Mile Labs have continued on in business, raising funds or generating revenue, the company said in a release.
“As an active angel investor in Seattle, I’m very familiar with the challenges that early stage startups face,” said Rubens in a statement. “9Mile Labs’ systematic approach to company building is critical to help stimulate startup activity in our community.”
—Seattle supercomputer company Cray Inc. has appointed Fred Kohout to the position of Chief Marketing Officer, where he will be responsible for leading Cray’s global marketing efforts, business development initiatives, and partnerships.
Kohout has held executive-level marketing positions at Fortune 500 companies including EMC and Sun Microsystems, Inc. Most recently, he was the vice president at EMC, where he was in charge of redesigning and implementing new business partner programs and he led the company to more than $6 billion in revenue.
“There has never been a more exciting time to be at Cray,” said Kohout. “The demand for supercomputers is exploding, as commercial enterprises – from manufacturing to financial services – grapple with a massive influx of data, the need for real-time analytics and compute power at scale.”