The big-city addresses that frequently prettify the office locations of esteemed accounting houses have continued to be a reliable draw for 20-something-year-old accounting grads eager to be counted among urban professionals.
Thus we would not have been surprised to learn that back in the late 1980s, when recent grad Jim Caci was assigned to Arthur Andersen’s Roseland, New Jersey, office, he experienced what might have been called a “ho-hum” moment.
Not so! Unlike the real estate occupied by his big-city peers, Caci notes, “Roseland” afforded him more access to Andersen partners, who were arguably more approachable outside the accounting house’s big-city confines. What’s more, the New Jersey site tended to operate in a more independent fashion than AA’s marquee offices, a cultural attribute that perhaps made it an ideal location from which to spearhead a pilot program to provide a unique menu of services to small technology companies.Read More
“The idea was that from among these small companies would ultimately come the next Microsoft, but we would have already begun working with them when they were at only $5 million in revenue,” explains Caci, who reports that Roseland became one of only a handful of AA offices to test the program.
At the same time, the Roseland office had some plus-size neighbors, including AT&T Corp., whose headquarters at the time were a mere 25-minute drive away in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.
Caci tells us that this is when his career benefited from both geography and timing.
At the time, Arthur Andersen had been engaged by AT&T to help with the formidable task of splitting up the firm into its Baby Bell operating companies, per its historic agreement with the U.S. government.
The multi-step nature of this undertaking and regular management updates that it demanded led Caci and other Roseland denizens to frequently commute to Basking Ridge.
Says Caci: “Here I was at the beginning of my second year out of school, and I was being asked to help present to the senior leadership of AT&T.” –Jack Sweeney
“As the CFO, you may be tempted to reduce your finance team to control costs. You have to resist the urge to do so. It’s important to have a solid team around you to execute on your goals and keep finance as a strategic entity in the business.” –Jim Caci, CFO, AvePoint
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CFOTL: Tell us about AvePoint … what does this company do, and what are its offerings today?
Caci: Fundamentally, AvePoint is a geographically dispersed, global software company. About 55% of our revenue comes from outside the U.S., with 45% generated here. We’re headquartered in the U.S., but we have a global reach that distinguishes us from many other companies in terms of size. We really try to take advantage of being so geographically dispersed, which certainly helps us in some of the tough times like what we’re going through now, when we’re seeing a lot of stress in the market and in companies. We’ve been able to insulate ourselves a little bit from all of this just based on the fact that we play in many different markets.Read More
What does our software do? At our core, we’re a SaaS management platform that helps firms with their SaaS infrastructure and digital workplace environment. Whether this means Microsoft 365 or Google or Salesforce, we help to manage all of the data that companies have within these systems. We also manage who has access to them and what they have access to. Essentially, our focus is on what we would call this governance around the provisioning of resources.
We’re a leader in this space, which has been great. Our company is 20 years old, so we’ve been doing this for a long time. We went public just 2 years ago, but we have a very tried-and-true offering that’s been steadily growing. We also have a management team that’s been around for a long time. Although I’m technically a newbie, having come back 3 years ago, I was originally here from 2010 to 2013. We also have our founders as CEOs, as well as a senior management team that probably on average has been with the company for 14 to 15 years—so, we have lots of stability at the top.
AvePoint | www.avepoint.com | Jersey City, NJ