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Starbase Software

What’s it like when the big guys come to your door, talking acquisition? Starbase Software keeps its spark in the midst of transition.

What’s it like to have the big guys come to your door talking about acquisition? Just ask Scotts Valley-based Starbase Software. Denny Michael, executive vice president of marketing during the company’s acquisition by Borland, chats about transitions, challenges, and keeping a spark.

How did Borland’s acquisition of Starbase this year change the company?

Starbase will now be able to compete in international markets as never before due to the larger “footprint” that Borland already has established in EMEA and the Asian marketplaces. Starbase can now also offer products through channels such as Programmers Paradise and larger distributors, which will enable larger groups of our target audience to be able to purchase our products. So from a product point of view, we’ll be able to offer more product to a wider group of buyers and this will impact sales, marketing and engineering operations at Starbase due to the widening of our offerings.

To make this transition as smooth as possible, we have established a variety of training sessions so that both Borland employees and Starbase employees understand how each company works in regards to these issues. We’re also installing a teleconferencing capability at Starbase so our meeting will be more productive. Communication is key.

What is your Weekly Web Seminar Series, and why did you introduce it?

Our Web seminar has been a big hit with our sales group and customers. We put it in place so that each week at a scheduled time our customers can participate in a live session with Starbase technical and sales representatives. We’ll pick a topic of discussion and run through it from top to bottom, answering questions as we go. Customers now have a place to interact on a weekly basis to learn more about our products and get questioned answered on how best to implement our solutions.

What are some of the challenges in running the company?

The real challenge is getting the word out on how a product offering such as ours can really save money and time in software development. The challenge has always been and continues to be getting potential customers to understand the total ROI on this type of approach. Let’s face it — the economy is tough out there and our goal is make sure that our audience understands the real value to them of our products.

How is the company faring in the current economic climate?

We see a lot of companies that normally would be purchasing taking a wait-and-see approach. We’re not losing those customers to competition, we’re just seeing a delay in purchasing until there are stronger signs of a economic turn-around.

What makes you happy to go to work every day?

Really, a couple of things. The Starbase technology in our space is second to none. It truly is the technical leader and it’s one of the reasons that Borland purchased us. So, its nice to be at a company that is clearly a driving force in the SCM marketplace. The other reason is that we have a great group of people here at Starbase that are wonderful to work with and like to have fun. I have been at other companies where employees have lost their spark and simply stopped being engaged in what they do. That’s not the case at Starbase at all.

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