Tarantella's new chief talks money

Tarantella's new chief talks money

Summary: Since Frank Wilde joined Tarantella as chief executive in December, he's brought in a new management team, and now a cool $16.4m in funding. ZDNet UK quizzed him about his plans to rebuild the company's fortunes

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And what does all this mean for your customers?
This move today makes it a lot easier for customers to buy our products. Many of the customers who have installed Tarantella are Fortune 1000 companies. Now we have to get those customers comfortable with where we are.

We have brought full compliment of management team, including a chief financial officer [John M. Greeley] who was formerly CFO at BIOS-maker Phoenix Technologies, a vice president of marketing, of corporate development and of sales. All have track records of achievement.

Did anybody leave as a consequence of this?
They all replaced the previous people.

What was the reason for replacing such a large part of the management team?
We want to take the company forward in a positive way. We wanted to extend the number of people on the management team responsible for sales around the world, and implement marketing programmes that would enable our channel partners to be more effective than in the past.

Where did the investment come from?
We brought in eight or nine investors who brought with them the $16.4m. They have confidence in the management team, really believe in this market, and like the fact that company has great customer references.

If you look at the space we are in there are some very significant trends that set the stage for us to be successful; the whole move to Linux, and the reduction in cost of broadband, are all trends that can accelerate customers using our products.

So what is their exit strategy? Clearly it is not an IPO, since you’re public already.
They believe our stock price is already undervalued. Their exit strategy is a stock price that is significantly higher than couple of dollars today.

So it doesn’t sound like this is VC money.
Some are fund managers, and none of them are typical venture capitalists, who would look to make money on the IPO. These guys are looking for companies that are undervalued. They are looking for a challenge, and the challenge for us is getting re-listed. We feel that is very do-able.

Topics: Apps, Software Development

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