Michael Chasen

President and CEO
Michael Chasen is an entrepreneur focused on the technology, education and SoLoMo (Social Local Mobile) sectors. Michael was the co-founder and CEO for 15 years of Blackboard Inc., an eLearning software company used by over 20,000 institutions in more than 70 countries, with over 20 million students and faculty utilizing Blackboard's platforms. Under Michael's leadership, Blackboard grew from 2 employees to over 3,000, with 21 offices around the globe and a financial position of ~$620m in pro-forma revenue and $165 in cash EBITDA in 2012. Blackboard's revenue CAGR for the last 7 years was ~25%. Over the growth of the company, Michael established and led an enterprise software division, Software-as-a-Service technology, and a Mobile software division. He helped to create 10 data centers around the world and worked to establish the first true Cloud solution for education. While Blackboard sold its software to colleges, universities and schools it developed its software for use by the consumer – the over 20m students and faculty that used Blackboard software on a daily basis. Blackboard Mobile Learn and Blackboard Mobile Central were both marketed directly to students and had millions of users. Michael also led the acquisition of over 22 competitors and add-on technologies. Michael took the company public in 2004 at an approximately $400m valuation. Blackboard's stock traded up 43% on its first day, making it the second best performing IPO of 2004. Blackboard was public for 7 years before selling to Providence Equity Partners in 2011 for $1.7 billion. Michael is an investor and advisor to several companies that are focused on using technology to improve education, as well as several start-up ventures and mature companies across the technology spectrum. Michael has a degree in Computer Programming from American University and his MBA from Georgetown University. He lives in Bethesda, MD with his wife Randi and their three children, Skylar, Logan and Lily.
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