Marketo founder Phil Fernandez has been replaced as CEO by Steve Lucas, who formerly made a rapid rise at SAP to become global president of the SAP Platform Solutions Group.
Fernandez, who founded the San Mateo, Calif.-based marketing automation provider in 2006, stepped down Tuesday.
His departure comes just months after Vista Equity Partners closed on its $1.79 billion acquisition of Marketo, triggering the resignations of Marketo CMO Sanjay Dholakia and chief administrative officer Fred Ball. Both Dholakia and Ball remained through the company's acquisition to ensure a smooth transition, a company spokeswoman said.
Chandar Pattabhiram was subsequently named SVP and CMO.
Marketo is still facing two class action lawsuits in connection with the sale, which will generate more than $58 million for Fernandez, court documents show. In a suit filed in July in California federal court, shareholder Robert Rosati alleged the proxy statement failed to disclose material information about potential conflicts of interest affecting Marketo’s management.
In the other suit, filed in July in Santa Clara County Superior Court in California, Sonila Porwal alleged Marketo’s directors breached their fiduciary duties to Marketo stockholders by selling the company through a "defective process."
Lucas previously held global leadership positions across SAP's business analytics database and technology, business objects and corporate strategy and market development organizations. When asked about his rapid promotions on Quora in 2014, Lucas attributed his success to "good timing" and "being fortunate to learn from and work with brilliant people early in my career."
In a statement, Fernandez said he founded Marketo with a "bold vision that marketers would take on a powerful new role within their organizations, owning customer engagement and digital transformation."
He added that he's confident Lucas will help Marketo "maintain and extend our commitment to innovation, integrity and customer success."
In other technology news ...
Marc Andreessen Joins Dialpad Board of Directors
“Dialpad will kill the desk phone and give enterprises the communications tools they need to survive and thrive,” Andreessen, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, said in a statement.
Dialpad claims more than 25,000 customers including Uber, Motorola Solutions, Vivint Solar, Hillary Clinton, Betterment, Netflix, TED and Code42.
“It’s incredibly validating to have one of the greatest investors and entrepreneur in the Silicon Valley join our board,” Craig Walker, CEO of Dialpad, said.
InMobi Launches Mobile-First, In-App Remarketing Platform
San Francisco-based InMobi, a global mobile advertising and discovery platform, launched of its mobile-first, in-app remarketing platform in the US.
Marketers and app developers can retarget existing users across InMobi’s global ad network and exchange composed of 1.5-plus billion mobile devices. Advertisers can also execute a mobile growth strategy across the conversion funnel.
Retail apps can target users who have recently installed their app with custom offers. Music apps can showcase a carousel of trending bestseller tracks. A cab hailing app can retarget existing users during peak office hours. Gaming apps can re-engage users by offering cool things in another level.
ATOMIZED Announces $2.5M in Seed Funding
Atlanta-based ATOMIZED, a cloud-based, visual content marketing calendar for marketing departments and their advertising agencies, announced this week the completion of a $2.5 million round of seed funding, and two new additions to the company’s leadership team.
Angel investors who have worked with Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter supported the seed round. The money will enable ATOMIZED to increase product marketing efforts and add to the company’s leadership team: VP of Sales Robert Barbieri and VP of Client Services Daniel Hayden are new company executives.
Barbieri comes to ATOMIZED from Spredfast, where he served as a sales director leading the company’s sales and partnership efforts. Hayden previously held a senior product development management role at Oracle in the company’s social cloud division.
ATOMIZED was co-founded in 2013 by former Facebook and Instagram creative strategist Chris Gomersall and business consultant Keith Sistrunk.
Clkim Earns Seed Funding
Neve Ilan, Israel-based Clkim closed a $1 million first round of funding and appointed a new chairman of the board, Ran Poliakine, the former CEO of Powermat Technologies. Poliakine also owns NanoX Imaging, Years of Water, Illumigyn and QinFlow.
Clkim, a competitor to companies like Bitly, provides branded links to help users improve content click through rates and enable them to segment their audience instantly after a user engages with a link.
UserIQ Secures $2 Million
Atlanta-based UserIQ, a customer growth platform, raised $2 million in Series A funding in a round led by BIP Capital. Atlanta’s Accelerant Venture Capital, BLH Venture Partners and Tech Square Ventures also participated.
UserIQ’s Customer Growth Platform combines engagement features, user intelligence and a Customer Health Dashboard to help companies engage with their users to drive growth beyond the traditional sales funnel.
Ashish Mistry, managing partner at BLH Venture Partners, said the UserIQ platform is "truly differentiated in the marketplace."