Datto founder waves goodbye to his CEO day job

Austin McChord, the founder of backup service provider Datto, has stepped down as CEO.

It’s all rather sudden but he is staying on the board and is involved in the search for his successor. In the meantime Tom Weller, president and COO, is interim CEO.

Datto was bought by Vista Equity Partners for $1.5bn a year ago. The idea was to combine Datto with Vista’s Autotask business and build a unified managed service platform for IT management, data protection and business continuity.

At the time of the acquisition the Datto-Autotask  combo had some 1,300 employees with offices in nine countries, and nearly 13,000 MSP customers servicing more than 500,000 small and medium business in 125 countries.

McChord says he will “continue to be actively involved with the company”.

Austin McChord, Datto founder and, now, ex-CEO

“This move is part of a natural evolution for the company and for me, ” he said. “Datto was my first passion, and I’m looking forward to focusing my efforts on providing strategic counsel and support now that the company is in a market-leading position.”

Time for a change

Weller said: Austin’s legacy provides a sound foundation for Datto today and sets high ambitions for our future…I look forward to working with the board and Austin as we enter this next phase of growth and opportunity for our company.”

Nadeem Syed, operating principal at Vista Equity Partners, said: “Austin has built a truly special company that is poised for tremendous growth. While it is always difficult when a founder moves on from a company he built, we are truly grateful for what Austin has created. We look forward to working with him in his capacity as a board member and advisor as we move into this next phase.”

In a valedictory statement McChord said: “I founded Datto 11 years ago in a basement. What started out as an entrepreneurial dream, has grown into a team of 1,400 employees serving more than 14,000 Managed Service Providers with reach in 132 countries. I’m proud of the company we have built and our commitment to the MSPs we serve. Datto is positioned better than ever to continue serving partners and growing.”

He was a startup guy and Datto/Autotask is no longer a startup business.