Emptoris announced at Empower earlier today that Patrick (Pat) Quirk was taking over the helm as CEO. You can read about Patrick's highly qualified background on his LinkedIn profile, which we can all agree is quite impressive. However, I am concerned, based on his profile, that Emptoris will need more than his 463 connections to meet the aggressive revenue targets its investors are seeking. Just kidding. On a serious note, Patrick already strikes me as someone with not only a strong understanding of the sector, but as also having the savvy to take the company well into nine figures in revenue from both product development/R&D and sales/operations perspectives.
Moreover, Emptoris customers should feel comfortable that Patrick remains committed to innovation and investing in product leadership in the sector. I also took it as a good sign when I learned last night that Patrick is immediately relocating to Boston to take an everyday hands-on approach to managing the Emptoris operation.
The forthcoming press release should give some flavor of Patrick's background. It notes that he "previously served as General Manager and Group Vice President of Supply Chain Management (SCM) Products and Technology at PeopleSoft, Inc., where he oversaw the acquisition of JD Edwards by PeopleSoft for $1.7 Billion, one of the largest software acquisitions in ERP and PeopleSoft history. At PeopleSoft, Quirk was responsible for an organization of 500+ professionals globally and oversaw all aspects of the SCM business including product strategy, product development, marketing and global support. Under Quirk's leadership, the company's Supply Chain Management (SCM) solutions received consistently high customer satisfaction ratings (91%) -- and were in the top 10 selling modules out of more than 375 PeopleSoft products."
Now don't get me started on PeopleSoft's functional depth from a source-to-pay perspective (if you believe the hype, I can also assure you that Dave Duffield's new venture will guarantee 99.9999% uptime). But that's not the point. Patrick's team took what was a strong installed base with little propensity towards adopting supply chain and procurement solutions given their human capital / general ledger bent and successfully foisted more product than they really needed on them. This time around, however, he's got the real deal product-wise (and customer adoption-wise). Emptoris remains from a functional standpoint, one of the top providers in nearly all areas of the Spend Management market (minus P2P) and its customers are perennial early adopters and innovators in procurement. In my view, if Pat can do half of what he did at PeopleSoft, I'm sure his appointment will go down as one of the best executive hiring decisions in the sector. For his sake, I just hope he used Bob Calderoni's compensation benchmarks when negotiating ...