The BizSpark startup of the day is Fortressware, based in the US. You will find below an interview with Ann C. Ting, Founder and Chairperson of Fortressware. All the best to them and congrats for being the startup of the day!
Interview with Ann C. Ting, Founder and Chairperson of Fortressware
Tell us who you are and your role in the company:
I am the founder and chairperson of the company and I am responsible for strategy and strategic business development.
What did you do before creating your company?
Fortressware is the second company I founded. The first one was a healthcare business process platform company which is now part of Lawson (NASDAQ: lwsn: It provides software and service solutions to 4,500 customers in the healthcare, manufacturing, distribution, maintenance and service sector.)
How do you feel being the most promising ‘Startup of the Day’ per Microsoft BizSpark?
I think Microsoft BizSpark had done a lot toward the goal of innovation and providing advanced tools that allow companies like Fortressware to innovate and bring creative solutions to market. As such, BizSpark is a very elite community that everyone wants to join. So being chosen as the most promising Startup of the Day is a great honor.
What is your company’s mission?
With the market growth around sharing of information, our mission is to provide ways for people to be able to enjoy these new conveniences with whomever they want. And in expanding these sharing boundaries they can continue to feel confident in knowing that their information is secure.
How did you get the idea for your company?
When globalization of data and the need to share information started to become reality it became obvious to us that the need to manage the security or sensitivity of information needed to change. More specifically, we realized the old ways of only securing information behind the business’ firewalls was insufficient as these walls were expanding or becoming blurred. We found no solution that was practical and usable to control the propagation of a piece of information when there is a need to share that information in the first place.
Tell us about your funding history. Are you currently looking for funding? If so, how much?
We have raised an initial round of financing from VC and angels, and are currently looking for the next round of $5m for continued development and the expansion of sales and marketing.
How many employees do you have? How many developers?
We have 15 employees and 7 developers.
Are you hiring? If yes, what are you hiring and where?
Yes, we are always looking for talented people with passion and ambition to solve problems that will make everyone’s life better.
Which platform are you building on? Why?
Our software is built and can be used on Microsoft Windows and Server platforms. They are the most popular platforms for our target customers.
Where do you see opportunities today in the Software/internet area?
It will continue to be in the area of how to let people take advantage of the new ways to connect or to do business with those people whom you never had a way to reach to in the past.
What do you think about the BizSpark Program?
It is a fantastically helpful program for the start-ups to have all the resources they need to get their project started, and connecting them with a community of people where they can share business concepts and experiences and even do business with.
Do you have any advice for young Software entrepreneurs?
Just enjoy the fun while trying to realize your personal dream.
Who’s your role model?
My dad, who became an entrepreneur after he was 60. He raised a fund to create a non-profit organization providing training for people who wanted to learn new skills that can help them get better jobs but could not afford to. There were not only political issues but labor union issues that he had to conquer. It was a huge and a very meaningful accomplishment and I was very much influenced by him.
What’s the ONE THING you would like readers to take away from this interview?
We all have our dreams, with MS BizSpark, we have a great partner to help us realize our dreams.