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Thycotic’s Cyber Security Publication

From CEO to CTO: Handing over the reins and getting back to my roots

Written by Jonathan Cogley

October 21st, 2015

Hello all,

It’s been about ten years since we started building Thycotic as an IT Security business and launched our first security products into the market. With a lean team and careful bootstrapping, we took a small software startup from nothing all the way to revenue over ten million dollars, which has been pretty awesome. One thing that definitely became apparent to me was: what’s next? How do we dial it to the next level by solving problems for even more customers?

I remember meeting with our management team late last year as we talked about our future as a company, and how to take our current revenues into exponential growth with limited resources, and realized that it’s not an easy feat to accomplish. In fact, it’s really, really difficult. You need the right people with the right experience and resources available to achieve that goal. This started the conversation about pursuing growth equity and figuring out who would be the right partner and what sort of expertise and industry experience we would need to scale our company to its potential and beyond. It became very apparent to me that we needed to do something different.

After courting the market we decided to move forward with financial backing from Insight Venture Partners, and after releasing our record-breaking Q3 2015 growth announcement, we can all agree that this partnership was exactly the right decision to help take things to the next level. We then on-boarded several new executives who are software industry veterans that have helped growing companies like us multiple times before. So with our brand new investment partners, newly on-boarded industry expert executives, and a fast growing staff across all teams and departments, the recurring question presented itself to me once more: what’s next?

Personally, I’ve lead an exceptional team over the last ten years through many shining moments and bouts of success, but looking ahead, am I the right person to continue that role for the next several years to come?

I believe each person has a gift and skillset. It’s important to understand where people are best suited, knowing what you’re good at and what you’re great at, and how it all fits into this current chapter of our company’s awesome story.

With growth comes change, and I want to make sure that everyone reading this – our customers, investors, partners, colleagues and friends – understands that this decision did not manifest out of pressures from our new executives, investors or any other key stakeholders involved in the growth of our great company, but rather is something that I truly believe is the right decision to continue propelling our company to new heights; a decision that I’m making with as much confidence and conviction as I had launching the very first release of Secret Server to market in 2005.

It’s a decision that will ultimately create more structure for the company, from the top down, especially for the technology arm of our business, and will allow us greater flexibility to meet the growing demands of our now 7,500+ customers world-wide.

Effective today, I am going to be assuming the role of founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO), transitioning the role of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to our recently appointed President Jim Legg, who has been successfully running global sales and corporate operations for Thycotic since July of this year. With more than twenty-five years executive management experience in emerging technology sectors, I have no doubt that Jim will continue to do a stellar job leading us to the next level of growth and beyond while making good on our promise to deliver easy to use, affordable enterprise security tools to our customers world-wide.

As CTO, my focus will be understanding the IT industry, the technology that surrounds us, what things are changing for our customers and how Thycotic will evolve to support those changes. The landscape of IT security is changing fast, and we need to make sure our customers are prepared for it.

My responsibility is to ensure our technology teams have the right resources, guidance and leadership to continue innovating road map and executing on the demands of our customers across all of Thycotic technology: From our products to our support, our internal infrastructure and R&D efforts.

As founder I’ll continue to be involved in the day-to-day decisions on the corporate governance, direction and priorities for our company and remain a resource to help lead and mentor our talented team.

Looking back, the last decade has been an incredible journey and I am excited for what lies ahead. It was an honor to serve you all as CEO, and now I am thrilled to be taking on this new role. I want to personally thank you for supporting me in this decision and invite you all to take a step forward with us as we press on and ever upward in this great journey.

Warmest regards,

Jonathan Cogley
Founder and Chief Technology Officer
Thycotic

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Jonathan grew up in South Africa and began his software engineering career in London where he founded Thycotic Software Ltd in 1996, moving Thycotic headquarters to the United States several years later. Thycotic is recognized as the fastest growing private company in identity and access management. Jonathan speaks at more than 40 enterprise technology events throughout the year and has appeared in notable news outlets such as The Wall Street Journal Radio, The Washington Post, CNET, Yahoo! Finance, PC Magazine and CSO. Jonathan regularly contributes to WIRED magazine’s Innovation Insights on all things infosec.