Serial tech executive Bill Veghte, formerly CEO of online survey company Survey Monkey, and a long-time exec at both Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft, has landed at business software maker Turbonomic.
He will be full-time executive chairman of the company, which makes software that automatically monitors and manages software running in data centers.
Turbonomic, an eight-year-old company with nearly 400 employees, is led by chief executive Ben Nye, who works out of its Boston headquarters with Shmuel Kliger, founder and president, based in New York. Veghte himself will remain in Northern California and anchor the Silicon Valley effort.
“For better or worse, the West Coast and the Valley are pretty darned important,” Veghte said in an exclusive interview with Fortune.
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So, why Turbonomic? “I wanted a company that had a mission that could meaningfully impact the IT industry and also have the capability to accomplish it,” Veghte said.
He said Turbonomic, with 1,600 business customers, is on its way. Businesses use its software to monitor how their applications are performing, and, if there is a problem, “autonomically” assign the resources to make things right. The term “autonomic” implies that all this is done without human interaction or the need for additional hardware.The company has netted about $60 million in venture funding including a $50 million round led by Iconiq Capital, a valley fund closely tied to Facebook
co-founder mark Zuckerberg, in early 2015. Other investors include Bain Capital, Globespan Capital Partners, and Highland Capital Partners.
Turbonomic claims to add or delete virtualized computing resources whether they run in private or public clouds, or in the customers’ own traditional data centers. Public clouds like Amazon
Web Services or Microsoft
Azure. are massive farms of servers, storage and networking available for many customers. Private clouds run on gear operated and used by a single company and hybrid clouds are a mix of the two.
This is a huge promise. “We match application demands with infrastructure supply,” Veghte said, asserting that most companies try to fix application issues by throwing both hardware and people at the problem when they could use Turbonomic to automate it away.
“Azure and AWS can match their infrastructure supply with the demand they see. Turbonomic enables customers to use the same sort of demand matching in traditional settings,” Veghte said. At its most basic. Turbonomic says it not only monitors applications, but enacts fixes on its own if they are faltering. So if your database is hit by an unexpected surge in demand, Turbonomic says it will assign more resources to make sure the work gets done.
Veghte is a high-profile tech veteran. He spent nearly two decades at Microsoft, where he held several positions including senior vice president in charge of Windows. He then joined pre-split Hewlett-Packard Inc.
in 2010, where he served as chief operating officer. He left HPE , where he was a top lieutenant to CEO Meg Whitman, in June, 2015 and was named CEO of Survey Monkey a month later. He stepped down six months after that. Asked about that short tenure, Veghte said he and other investors differed on the strategic direction of the company, but it was all good. He remains on Survey Monkey’s board.