Larry Middle of JumpCloud

An exclusive Tech Tribune Q&A with Larry Middle, the co-founder, CFO, and SVP Operations of JumpCloud, which was honored in our:
Tell us the origin story of JumpCloud – what problem were you trying to solve and why?

The JumpCloud story started in 2007-8 when Rajat Bhargava and I were building a company called StillSecure. We had the idea for a next generation directory service because there was really only one player in the market. We couldn’t understand why it was a monopoly market and played with the idea for awhile. We couldn’t figure it out at the time, but came back to the idea in 2013. With the market shifting to cloud, including AWS & G Suite, the rise of Mac and Linux, and mobility, we thought that a next generation directory service from the cloud was needed. We talked to a lot of potential customers and believed that it would be well received. We introduced the first version of Directory-as-a-Service® in late 2014 and started selling it in 2015.

What was the biggest hurdle you encountered in your journey?

The biggest hurdle from the beginning of the company has been finding great people. We have grown quite quickly and have been fortunate to find many amazing people, but we are constantly looking for more.

What does the future hold for JumpCloud?

The current events of the COVID-19 pandemic and the impacts to our communities notwithstanding, we are quite excited about the future. We have a new home in Louisville and another one being built in Denver, so we are planning to continue to expand rapidly. Our platform, called Directory-as-a-Service, is ideal for organizations that are looking to leverage the cloud and modern approaches to IT. With over 100k organizations that have enrolled in our solution, JumpCloud’s platform solves the core problem of securely connecting users to their IT resources, including their systems, applications, files, and networks.

What are your thoughts on the local tech startup scene in Louisville?

The tech scene in Louisville is really expanding from what we can tell. We are new to the community with JumpCloud, but we were here and in Superior for about 12 years with our company StillSecure. We love all of the amenities, the easy access for people in both Denver and Boulder, and other great tech companies close by. With downtown Boulder becoming far more difficult and problematic for entrepreneurs to build scaling companies, we felt like Louisville was a perfect fit for us.

What’s your best advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Well, that is something that we think about a lot because we get asked about it all the time. My co-founder, Rajat, and our board member Will Herman recently wrote a book called The Startup Playbook. I would encourage everybody to grab a copy – it has been invaluable to entrepreneurs around the world. If I were to sum it up, I would say find something that you truly are passionate about and can put your all into for a very long time. There aren’t really quick hits in our world, so you’ll be at it for awhile, so you need to have an internal fire for what you are working on that will last a very long time.

 

For more exclusive interviews, see our full Profile of a Founder series

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