A couple of months ago, I quietly stepped down as CEO of PageCloud. I remain on the Board of Directors (currently, Chairman) and am the largest single shareholder. And of course, I will always be its Founder/creator.
The obvious response I get as I've been letting close friends & family in on this move is, "WAIT, WHAT?!"
If you're not in the tech game, this would seem to be unheard of, and smack of intrigue. If you've been around the tech block a few times, you know that it's not uncommon for a Founder to eventually move on after starting a company and getting it up & running.
PageCloud is 4 years old this September. It's been a hell of a ride so far. I'm proud to have personally dreamed up and built a magical technology that is changing how people put content on the Web forever (sorry-not-sorry if that sounds like bragging, it was a labor of love). Then - financed the company, built an amazing team of people to commercialize it and take it to market. We hit the TechCrunch stage in 2015, after a record breaking pre-sale campaign generating $1.6 million in ($99) pre-orders before we even had a v1 product - just based on the demo. Today, PageCloud has customers all over the world.
But you see, there's a lot more to building the next great company than creating the tech and getting things going. There's financing, going to market, pivoting, dealing with every twist and turn that's thrown at you. It's often a 10+ year journey to really get through that rapid growth, monster scale, public company kind of thing. And along the way, it takes a lot of different skill sets. I found myself 4 years in and spending most days obsessing over KPIs, Board management, (institutional) investor relations as well as a bunch of other things that aren't really the reason you start a company in the first place (important as they are). Not to mention some startup burn-out setting in.
After much consideration, it's time for me to move aside and let the rest of the story unfold. A decision like this doesn't happen overnight. It's the product of a lot of soul searching and balancing of priorities. It requires putting the ego aside. It takes the long view and puts the company first. I readily do this because I love the product we've created and the purpose we are aiming to serve for our users. I continue to be excited about seeing this mission unfold.
The team I leave behind is amazing. They are passionate, tremendously skilled and united behind a singular mission - to democratize the Web. The product is evolving faster than ever. I'm excited to see what PageCloud does next.
In the grand scheme of things, this is still just the beginning for PageCloud. And like a proud parent, I look forward to my creation's continued growth while I recharge and contemplate...
...what to do next.