Chris Jenkins News editor

Chris works from BRW's Sydney newsroom. He has previously written and edited in print and online for titles including The Australian Financial Review and The Australian.

View more articles from Chris Jenkins

Atlassian adds Silicon Valley heavyweights to board, fuelling IPO talk

Published 26 August 2013 08:28, Updated 29 November 2013 09:57

+font -font print
Atlassian adds Silicon Valley heavyweights to board, fuelling IPO talk

Atlassian has highlighted the public company experience brought by new director, former Symantec CEO Enrique Salem.

Star Australian software group Atlassian has added two Silicon Valley heavyweights to its board. Facebook engineer Jay Parikh and former Symantec CEO Enrique Salem bring its total number of directors to eight.

The appointments add to ongoing speculation about timing of possible US float for Atlassian, which has grown rapidly since its inception in 2002.

“Enrique’s expertise in IT security and managing a large public company is invaluable,” Atlassian co-founder and CEO Scott Farquhar says in a statement.

“Jay’s experience in building and scaling one of the world’s largest computing platforms is directly relevant to helping us scale Atlassian OnDemand, one of the world’s largest collaborative software development platforms.”

Prior to his current role at Facebook, prominent on Parikh’s resume is his stint as the vice president of engineering at Akamai Technologies, whose distributed computing systems provide points of presence around the globe for many of the world’s top websites.

Facebook’s Jay Parikh brings expertise that will help Atlassian scale up, the company says.

US website VentureBeat reports Salem, who is on US President Barack Obama’s management advisory board, recently took up a directorship at security group FireEye, just prior to it launching an initial public offering.

Atlassian president Jay Simons told VentureBeat Salem and Parikh add to what is “a pretty enviable board”. Two directors, Kirk Bowman and Richard Wong, represent Accel Partners, from which Atlassian received its first and thus far only round of funding with a $60 million investment in 2010.

Salem, he says, knows “how to grow a company, how to prioritise, how to recruit and retain talent, and how to scale a corporate culture”.

Making tools that assist software developers to track and collaborate on projects, Atlassian already has plenty of runs on the board, becoming the brightest star in the Australian software development space.

The company is ranked at No.2 on BRW’s Best Places to Work list behind Sydney high-frequency trader Optiver.

Last week the company placed at No.448 on BRW’s 2013 list of Australia’s Top 500 companies, jumping 15 places from 2012 with a $22.4 million increase in revenue to $100 million.

Founder Farqhuar and co-founding partner Mike Cannon-Brookes both feature on the BRW Rich 200 and Young Rich lists, with an estimated fortune of $250 million each.

Locally the company has also been ramping up, revealing in June a plan to add 100 staff in the coming year and 100 staff worldwide in the September quarter.

Farquhar told BRW most of the new jobs are in engineering, and the company also plans to hire many more designers to improve the user experience.

Atlassian’s current board of directors

Chairman | Doug Burgum: former chairman of the board of SuccessFactors and former CEO and chairman of Great Plains Software;

Murray Demo: former CFO of Adobe Systems, Dolby Laboratories and LiveOps;

Kirk Bowman: venture partner at venture capital firm Accel Partners and former executive vice president of worldwide sales at both EqualLogic and VMWare;

Richard Wong: general partner at Accel Partners, and

Scott Farquhar and Mike Cannon-Brookes: co-CEOs and co-founders of Atlassian;

Jay Parikh: vice president of infrastructure engineering at Facebook;

Enrique Salem: former president and CEO of Symantec.

Comments