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Flying High & Still Hungry For More: Life For Dyn After Funding

Dyn - Mad Men

Several of the 70 new hires from the last six months took part in ‘Mad Men Day’ at Dyn.

Last spring, we were flying high.

We were adding customers and employees at a torrid pace. We kept our stellar products rock solid, innovating in Internet Infrastructure, building enviable customer and partner relationships, and hiring and retaining the best talent to rep our brand and harden our culture. We seemingly had it all figured out.

But the truth is that as a leadership team, we felt Dyn was incomplete.

Back in early October 2012, we announced our first funding round of $38M from North Bridge. This was a significant milestone that represented a step function for our growth. It wasn’t solely the money, it wasn’t only about buzz, and it wasn’t just the credibility. It was all of those things. The most important was the opening of a support network of people (board and recruited talent) to help us continue to grow. It’s always about the people.

One of those people and a good friend of Dyn (Mark Prestipino, CEO of Iris Maps & Envista) had warned us of an impending challenge that would test our resolve, a hurdle that would trip us up and determine our ability to evolve and march on. “Something is coming around the corner,” he would say. These challenges hit every scaling company and are unavoidable. He was warning us because he had experienced it and cares.

When we decided to accept North Bridge’s offer, we thought for sure that was it. Even though funding rounds are celebrated, it was different for us. We had never had this type of corporate governance or oversight. It challenged the commitment and closeness of our executive team: Jeremy (CEO, 2001), Gray (COO, 2007), Cory (CTO, 2008) & myself (CRO, 2008). We’d really grown together over the previous 4+ years, both personally and professionally. Was this the right move for Dyn? Could we handle the pressure? Would we – four young thirtysomethings under a microscope – still enjoy working together as a new corporate entity for the first time?

Dyn - SXSW - DynMMT

Dyn attended and powered dozens of events, none bigger than #DynMMT at March’s SXSW.

Then, Tom Daly resigned in early November. Tom is Dyn’s co-founder and was Chief Scientist when he decided it was time to move on. We wish Tom true happiness and he’ll forever be a part of our tale.

Most present day followers of Dyn don’t know this, but there were actually four original founders (one left in 2004 and another in 2006, both talented guys for those stages of growth). Jeremy had been through this before, but at a much smaller Dyn and not as CEO. This time around, his even-keeled leadership style guided us with a steady hand. Internal messaging, outward client relations, board and investor satisfaction…all of it became OUR true challenge. It was all happening in our Q4 and the first quarter with the new board. We HAD to make a great first impression. How we performed would set the course for the next five years.

After the dust settled and we adapted to the new reality of board governance, we held our first two board meetings, approved our 2013 budgets and crushed our Q4 and annual revenue targets. Q1 kept pace, we wished Tom well, and we added some serious technical talent. Over 500 new enterprise clients and 100,000 new self signup customers came aboard our services in Q4/Q1 combined, and nearly 70 employees joined our journey during the same time. We’re thrilled to have just secured a game changing Chief Architect that we’ll announce in the coming months. He wrote the book.

Thanks to everyone involved for all the support and especially Mark. It’s all about the people. Jeremy and the rest of our executive team realized something well articulated by the boss himself, “The clowns are still running the circus.”

And with that, we carry on. As this spring commences, we’re flying higher than ever.


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Whois: Kyle York

Kyle York is Dyn’s Chief Strategy Officer and has been a long-time executive, having joined in 2008. Over the years, he has held go-to-market leadership roles in worldwide sales, marketing, and services. In his role as CSO, Kyle focuses on overall corporate strategy, including: positioning and evangelism, new market entry, strategic alliances and partnerships, M&A, and business development. Outside of Dyn, Kyle is an angel investor, entrepreneur, and advisor in several startups. Follow Kyle on Twitter: @kyork20 and @Dyn.