These industry leaders helped propel cloud computing to the forefront of technology innovation.
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John Keagy co-founded ServePath with David Hecht. ServPath in 2001, in the first days of cloud computing, became GoGrid, one of the earliest IaaS providers. That was a long time ago, but in many ways GoGrid has matched the basic steps of Amazon Web Services in generating self-provisioning IaaS.
Co-founder Keagy became CEO, Hecht became chief marketing officer. Hecht left to market CloudKick, which graphed a customer's network bandwidth in the cloud and other usage metrics. It was acquired by Rackspace in December 2010. Hecht currently markets the product line of CloudAmp, bringing Google analytics to Salesforce.com application users.
Having previously founded and run InReach Internet, one of the leading ISPs in the Western U.S., Keagy sold it in 1999 and two years later founded ServePath, which became a leader in the dedicated server hosting market, a predecessor to the virtualized, self-provisioning cloud-hosting service.
Keagy has founded 13 companies that have achieved breakeven status; seven have become profitable or were sold. In 2008, when ServePath became GoGrid, an IaaS provider, Amazon was still offering its IaaS as a beta service.
After 10 years at GoGrid, Keagy felt the company was beyond the startup phase with its own CIO, CFO and CMO. So in June 2011 he left it in the hands of the board's executive chairman, Warren Heffelfinger, to work more with Upstream Networks, where he was president. Keagy remained a member of the GoGrid board. Eight months later, he was called back to the GoGrid CEO's seat.
"Sitting on the sidelines when I have the opportunity to move the needle, when I have so much more leverage on how I invest my career, I've got to take advantage of that," he told The West Host Industry Review. "There are a few things I can be doing that are transcendental and that are exciting. But when you're talking about changing the future of computing? Those are big words and the best way is taking the helm as CEO at a pioneer cloud infrastructure."
Gartner has previously placed GoGrid in the "visionary" segment of its cloud industry quadrant; this year it labeled GoGrid a "challenger," along with Joyent and close VMware partner Bluelock.
Richard Donaldson, director of global managed services at eBay, calls Kreagy "a tireless entrepreneur with great vision, excellent motivational skills and an ability to create an atmosphere of success … which is critical to any ongoing business. Bright, insightful and fun to work with."
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