Jive Software has to make even the hardest skeptics start to wonder.If there is any doubt about the social Web moving into the enterprise, then the news today from
The Portland, Oregon company that has built its success on providing a social layer to the enterprise is pursuing a path that may lead it to a public offering.
Fueled by venture capital, the company said today that it is looking for a new CEO.
Current CEO Dave Hersh is stepping aside from his role to become chairman of the Jive board. The interim CEO will be Tony Zingale, a Jive board member.
Hersh has lead the company since 2001. He will lead the search effort for a new CEO. Zingale is an experienced CEO. He most recently lead Mercury Interactive, a company acquired for $5 billion. He was also CEO of Clarify, a CRM company.
In a phone interview today, company executives said an IPO is a possibility. It's a move that makes sense. Jive is now competing with the largest technology companies in the market. For instance, Jive has a Sharepoint integration with Microsoft. But the reality is the two companies are vying for the same accounts.
The issue is size. Companies like Microsoft have huge sales channels. Jive does not have that kind of reach. An IPO would give Jive the resources to compete more effectively with the giants of the tech world.
It's also a clear sign that the market is there for social software in the enterprise. Hersh said to us in an interview recently that there is a mad chase for all applications to be social.
That's quite true. And Jive's dreams of an IPO are representative of that reality.