Philip Jacob

The End of netNumina

· Philip Jacob

Earlier this month, one of my former employers, netNumina, was sold to Keane. I’ll avoid making any remarks about the sensibility of this apparently bizarre acquisition (at a valuation substantially less than the amount that the VCs invested in the company back in 2000… ok, I’ll stop there ;) except to reflect back on this truly unique company.

Update: Based on this SEC filing, Keane paid $5.8M.

A little history: netNumina started as a spinoff from Open Environment Corporation’s professional services group shortly after they were acquired by Borland back in 1996. They had several of the developers of OEC’s Entera product, one of the first real implementations of modern middleware, which afforded netNumina the opportunity to design the software guts right at the heart of several huge financial services companies which were still relying on the old OEC Borland products.

My first introduction to netNumina came while working for one of their clients back in 1999. The thing that immediately impressed me about their people was that they were wonderfully easy to get along with. They really knew their technical stuff and, for the most part, they knew how to work together. And everybody was just generally cool to be around. This combination of interesting, bright, and fun people from all over the world made it a great place to work (plus, they were a 10 minute walk away from my house…), so I joined in 2001 as a Principal Consultant in the system architecture group.

While netNumina is in the process of disappearing, the friendships made and the knowledge gained still survive (I could probably name 30 friends from netNumina without even thinking).

Anybody who used to work at netNumina is invited to join the exnumina mailing list to stay in touch.

It was fun while it lasted.

(Kind of strange how otherwise healthy companies tend to go ker-plunk after VCs get involved, though….)

Update: There’s a netNumina bye-bye party on April 9th, 2005 in Arlington, MA. Please sign up for the exnumina mailing list (URL above) and ask for details if you are interested in coming. All ex-NN people are welcome.