BlueJeans Network, the cloud video and collaboration company, announced today that Quentin Gallivan, an industry veteran who has helped run several tech companies, will be taking over as CEO.
Former CEO and company founder Krish Ramakrishnan will remain with the company and take on the role of executive chairman. He will also continue to lead strategy and innovation.
Ramakrishnan doesn’t see this move as stepping back. He said that he actually pursued Gallivan precisely because he has a track record of scaling companies like Pentaho, Verisign and Postini –and he believed he needed a leader that could take the company to the next level. Meanwhile, Ramakrishnan will be freed up to concentrate on other projects that could take the company’s core video conferencing and collaboration business in new directions.
As Gallivan comes in the door, he takes over a company that he sees in pretty good shape — one of the primary reasons he was attracted to the job — but that requires some additional tweaking to go public eventually and all that entails. That means becoming a company fully committed to the needs of large enterprise customers.
The two leaders developed a bromance when they met informally at a gathering about 9 months ago. Ramakrishnan was soon convinced that Gallivan was the perfect fit to take over the CEO duties at BlueJeans. First, he had to talk Gallivan into leaving his position as CEO at Pentaho, the data and analytics company he had been running for over five years.
As the two talked, Gallivan discovered that Ramakrishnan was looking to take on a different role. Gallivan liked what he saw, a well capitalized company poised for growth. While he hadn’t worked with video in his previous positions, he said as he explored the company, he learned that it was playing an increasingly important role in enterprise communication and collaboration.
Of course he’s not the only one to notice that. Big players like Cisco Google and Microsoft have taken a shine to video communications. Facebook has too, although BlueJeans says they’re a partner with both Facebook Live and Workplace by Facebook.
Other video startups are also extremely well capitalized. Zoom raised $100 million in January on a billion dollar valuation. Another competitor, Fuze has raised $330M with $104 million coming in one big chunk in February (when it also hired a new CEO).
In spite of the heavy competition, Gallivan believes that BlueJeans is well positioned to take on all comers. “It’s taking the foundation we have and building off of that and completely focusing on the enterprise space,” he explained. He believes that the enterprise offers the greatest potential revenue and the best path to differentiating itself from the list of worthy competitors in this space.
BlueJeans has been around since 2009 and has raised over $175 million. Investors include Accel Partners, NEA, Battery Ventures and Derek Jeter’s Jeter Ventures.