One thing Silicon Valley doesn’t have enough of are solid product visionaries. The problem is the really good ones tend of start their own companies. Or whoever they work for locks them up so tight that no one can pry them loose. But there’s one guy I’ve kept my eye on for the last few years, Eckart Walther, who seems to be in play. I wonder for how long.
I first met Eckart when he was at Yahoo as a group vice president of product management for search – that was back in the day when Yahoo was still the no. 2 search engine behind Google and had no plans to relinquish that title. Prior to Yahoo he was at Tellme (acquired by Microsoft). And way back in the day, at Netscape. Most recently he parked himself at LiveOps doing God-knows-what.
He’s left LiveOps and has quietly taken a position at Accel Partners as an entrepreneur in residence. That means he’s being paid to sit around and think a lot, and occasionally join a meeting or two. I randomly saw this on his Facebook feed this evening and haven’t had a chance to talk to him about his plans. But he’s likely to either be starting a new company or looking for his next job at a startup.
Keep an eye on whatever he does next, it’s likely to be something worth watching. Follow him on Twitter at @eckartwalther.