The news that Datto Inc. founder Austin McChord is stepping down as the Norwalk, Conn.-based managed services vendor’s CEO caught the company’s 14,000 MSP partners by surprise. Here are initial thoughts, hopes, and fears from a few of those people.
“I’m both excited and nervous about his departure. I’m nervous because I truly value my partnership with Datto; they’ve always had their partners’ best interests at their core. I’m worried that will change with his departure. I’m excited because Austin is a true visionary and I’m sure this won’t be the last of him. [I’m] looking forward to seeing what he cooks up next.”
“My reaction is the same as when [Steve] Jobs was no longer at Apple, or when [Bill] Gates left Microsoft. Sure, both companies have done fine and are still quite healthy today, but I can’t help but think a little bit of innovation died with both of those departures. I have a hunch it will be the same with Datto.”
LAN Infotech LLC
-The VC firm [Vista Equity Partners, which bough Datto last year] is taking the firm in directions they don’t agree with and he is leaving for that reason, or
-The VC firm foolishly believes the visionaries are no longer needed as “they got this,” or
-It was just too much money to turn down and Austin et al. are simply moving on (to their own private islands).
I am hopeful it is not an issue, but fearful it will be in the near future.”
Net Sciences Inc.
“Austin reinforced how true channel companies operate—great products, great people, and an unwavering approach to working with their partners. There is an enormous amount of respect within the ASCII MSP community on what he and the Datto team have accomplished, and we wish him the best.”
The ASCII Group
“Our reaction was shock, no doubt! The news of him stepping down was definitely the chatter of the day throughout the whole office. Within minutes of the announcement, I had four people in my office. We had three from staff attend DattoCon this year, so it was inherently relatable to many. As the CEO of my company, it is defiantly eyebrow raising for what I consider to be one of my most solid vendors. It leaves me a little uneasy.”
IT Solutions of South Florida
“Austin McChord is a pioneer and visionary. He truly understood the roadmap of what he created. It’s not easy to find a CEO with such industry passion and know-how in one person. His connection with partners definitely empowered Datto’s success. He will be missed.
“Tim Weller has a successful financial background. Datto needs his experience given their size and growth. At the same time, the partner channel isn’t accustomed to Tim. And it sounds clear Tim is in the role until a new CEO is announced. The obvious task ahead is for Datto to secure another leader soon that connects with our industry.”
“I’m grateful for the MSP centric company and products that Austin built at Datto and wish him the best. Datto has grown into a company bigger than any one person. As a longtime partner, I have full confidence in the current leadership and look forward to Tim Weller and team taking over the reins moving forward.”
Anchor Network Solutions Inc.