SirsiDynix announced today that Patrick Sommers is stepping down as chief executive officer, effective immediately.
As you will recall, Vista Equity Partners recently acquired SirsiDynix. This was bound to bring some major changes, including this one. I asked Sommers directly in Seattle whether he would remain at the wheel under Vista’s ownership, and he claimed that he would, but I remained suspicious.
Suffice it to say, I am not surprised. Perhaps the timing is a bit odd, but the announcement itself was pretty expected. It’s slightly unusual that a replacement was not immediately ready to step in. Martin Taylor, one of the operating principles of Vista Equity Partners, is rumored to be taking the helm on an interim basis. The search for a new CEO will begin immediately.
I called my friend and industry expert Marshall Breeding, who had this to say:
“It’s clear that Pat Sommers was hired by Seaport Capital to grow Sirsi from the $25 million company that it was then to the new SirsiDynix that is nearly five times that size. But he was Seaport’s guy, and Vista will want to bring in their own leadership.”
The announcement comes just a couple of days before the SirsiDynix SuperConference is set to start. Unfortunately, I will miss all the buzz this year.
[This post originally appeared as part of American Libraries’ Hectic Pace Blog and is archived here.]
With all the ILS mergers of late, there’s plenty of unemployed talent to sift through to fill an executive role. Actually finding someone who actually knows what they are doing and knows what to do is another matter entirely.
Meanwhile, Ex Libris is reorganizing, too. They’ll have their hands full with the likes of the Library of Congress, Harvard and FCLA. That and mining the former Endeavor customer list for profitable migrations to Aleph 500 from Voyager.
Innovative will probably troll for defectors from, well, everywhere, at their leisure.
The open source projects are fresh, fun, fiesty, but appear to lack major functionality and/or the ability to scale. Sorry, Andrew, I was a little surprised at Pat’s departure – but not nearly as surprised as I’d be if an ARL library migrated to Koha or Evergreen. There’s plenty of time for that.
Back to SD…I don’t know what’s being demoed at trade shows these days. My hunch is Horizon 8.x/HIP 4.x. The Corinthian re-write of Horizon is MIA. Does anyone know if its in beta anywhere?
Unicorn remains what I call a “meat & potatoes” ILS. Not what you’d design nowadays if you were a vendor, or buy if you were a very forward looking customer. But the Unicorn system I administer hasn’t had a moment’s unplanned downtime in 13+ months, which is a relief.
Where we all go from here remains to be seen.