Author Archives: Warren Weiss

ForgeRock: Reshaping a Market

Posted by Warren Weiss

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When I first met the ForgeRock team last year, I thought it was an answer to the prayers of many CIOs I know. It was in the midst of its Series B at the time. I invested in it.

A year later, I’m even more excited about the opportunities and potential at ForgeRock. I just participated in its Series C round of funding. ForgeRock raised $30 million this time around, bringing its total funding to $52 million. CEO Mike Ellis plans to use this money to develop new products and to expand ForgeRock’s international reach.

This nimble four-year-old company provides identity relationship management solutions tailored for today’s digital market.  It has built out Sun Microsystem’s open source identity projects to work with any device or thing, as a multi tenant platform in the cloud or on site. ForgeRock has moved beyond traditional, employee-centric identity management software, and that’s a good thing. Given that we have more people using more devices and things to access more content than ever before, we need to ensure that the age-old concept of “who has access to what” keeps up. Ellis and his team are developing dynamic identity solutions designed for businesses that want to roll-out new customer-centric solutions that scale to support hundreds of millions of users and can move at the pace and speed of the Internet.

They already have customers in 30 countries. It’s an impressive list with companies like Salesforce, Toyota, Thomson Reuters, GEICO and BNP Paribas Investment Partners, and government agencies in Norway, Canada and the Vatican, among many others. Over a period of four years, they’ve built up a base of end users that’s in the hundreds of millions. And that number is only going to grow.

I like ForgeRock’s platform and believe this company can re-shape the identity relationship management market. Its leaders have the experience and knowledge to do it. They come from innovative backgrounds at SAP, Oracle, Apple, and Sun. They have a world class team that has proven they can build a global high growth business for the Cloud or On Premise market.

I’m so pleased to support ForgeRock. Congratulations!

Visier Continues to Impress Us

Posted by Warren Weiss

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When we first invested in Visier back in 2011, it was a small, promising 1-year-old startup with an ambitious vision. Now, it’s an award-winning developer of analytics solutions in the cloud for the HR needs of a long list of companies, including ConAgra Foods, Hyatt, Nissan, Time Inc. and Synopsys.

I am proud to continue supporting Visier as it closes its Series C financing. It has raised $25.5 million in this round, bringing its total funding to date to $49.5 million.

Visier, in my opinion, is the future of analytics. It’s the new way to plan and manage a workforce. It’s an easy sell. The old way, the more conventional way, uses SQL, expensive data warehouses, and is IT driven. And it can take a long time to see any results — six months or more. The new way, Visier’s way, is easy to understand and work with, is significantly cheaper to subscribe to and maintain, and here’s the part that will amaze anyone who’s worked on big data projects: Visier’s solution can go live in 4 weeks! It’s in the cloud, and can pull data from a vast number of sources. It has a beautiful UI, which will make you want to use it to study and predict trends in your workforce.

Clearly, I’m not the only one who’s impressed. In just the past year, Visier has doubled its customer base — it has more than 40 customers now — and has expanded its workforce. It recently opened a new office in San Jose, a short drive from where we’re based.

CEO John Schwarz says he wants to go broader and deeper with the money he’s raised. He’s going to step on the accelerator, both in the product and the markets they serve. I’m keen to see what he and the team do next.

His team released two new products last year — one for workforce planning and one for benchmarking. I’ve been pleased with them. His team, with key executives from Business Objects/SAP,  has experience, vision and enthusiasm, and I have no doubt that they will change the face of HR (and business intelligence, of course) as we know it.

We’ve stayed the course with Visier through every round of financing so far, and I’m thrilled to extend our partnership with them. Congratulations, John and the Visier family!